April 28, 2018
BORN FROM A VIRGIN WOMB. BURIED IN A VIRGIN TOMB.
Jesus was born to the virgin, Mary, and He was laid in a newly hewn tomb that belonged to Joseph of Arimathea. That Joseph along with his friend, Nicodemus, both members of the Jewish high council, would ask Pilate for the body and prepare it for burial, was extraordinary. The risk and sacrifice they took to bury Jesus was many. They risked Pilate’s wrath just asking for the body, which would normally have been left hanging for days before being thrown on the garbage heap of Gehenna. They risked their standing with the Jewish leaders. They sacrificed time and money purchasing the tomb, the linen and spices, which were very expensive. Finally, they were made ceremonially unclean by their handling of Jesus’ dead body, so that they could not participate in the paschal feast.
It was important that Christ’s body be placed in a new tomb, so that there would be no confusion concerning His resurrection. If His body had gone missing in a garbage dump, there could have been many explanations. But the empty tomb itself bears witness to His resurrection.
The prophet Isaiah prophesied concerning both the Messiah’s virgin birth (Isa. 7:14) and that He would be buried in a “rich man’s grave” (Isa. 53:9). Jesus was born from a virgin womb and buried in a virgin tomb. Every aspect of His life, death, burial and resurrection were in fulfillment of the Scriptures.
April 27, 2018
CHRIST’S FINAL PROVERB
As Christ was being led away by the soldiers to His crucifixion, he turned to the weeping women following Him to offer this proverb. He cautioned them to save their tears for themselves, for if such things could be done unto Him, a green, living and innocent tree, imagine what terrible suffering awaited a dry, dead and guilty tree like Jerusalem. Indeed, within 40 years of Christ’s crucifixion, in the year 70 AD, the Romans completely destroyed Jerusalem, tearing down its Temple and its walls.
The Jews had God’s law and the Romans were known for their Roman law and justice, yet they both showed the hypocrisy of human judgment when they conspired together to kill the innocent Jesus. It wasn’t Jesus, but humanity itself that was on trial that day. And humanity was found guilty–– guilty of rebellion against God and guilty of killing the Lord’s Anointed. Humanity is the dry tree. Yet, the green tree suffered and died in our place.
April 26, 2018
DAVID’S PROPHECY FULFILLED
David’s prophecy that the “kings and rulers of the earth would take counsel together against the Lord and against his Anointed” (Psa. 2:2) was fulfilled in Herod and Pilate. How sad that they would become friends by coming together against Christ. Yet, the disciples prayed for boldness to preach under the threat of those who had conspired to crucify Christ. For they were convinced that God had ordained these things and would handle their threats according to His purpose and plan (See Acts 4:23-31).
April 28, 2015
The curtain that separated the holy of holies in the Jewish temple was torn open when Jesus died. Only the high priest was allowed to go behind the curtain on the Day of Atonement. But now, Jesus has become our Great High Priest, opening up the way for all who are in Him to have access to the Father. And so, we can approach God with confidence, praying in the Name of Jesus, for the curtain that separated sinful man from a holy God has been removed.
April 27, 2015
When Pilate proposed to release Jesus in view of the Paschal pardon tradition, the crowds, incited by the Jewish leadership, called for the release of Barabbas instead. Ironic that the name “Barabbas” should mean “son of the father” in Aramaic. For the One they demanded to be crucified was indeed the Son of the Father. And so, the Righteous One was crucified and the rebellious murderer was set free. What injustice on the part of man! But what mercy on the part of God, that He would give His Son to die in our place!
April 28, 2013
The curtain that separated the holy of holies in the Jewish temple was torn when Jesus died. Only the high priest was allowed to go behind the curtain on the Day of Atonement. But now, Jesus has become our Great High Priest, opening up the way for all who are in Him to have access to the Father. And so, we can approach God with confidence, praying in the Name of Jesus, for the curtain that separated sinful man from a holy God has been removed.
April 27, 2013
This was what Jesus promised the thief on the cross next to Him. Much can be learned from this promise. The simplicity of the thief’s confession: “Jesus, remember me…” is startling. Can it really be so simple? And the immediacy of Christ’s response: “Today you will be with me…” is equally amazing. Jesus accepts the thief as one of His own without interview or resume. He tells him that from now on, starting today, you’ll be with Me.