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All Scripture citations are to the King James (Authorised) Version


Question: When Jesus was on the cross, why was He forsaken by His Father? (Matthew 27: 46)


My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?


Answer: Jesus quoted here from Psalm 22: 1; this entire Psalm appears to be prophetic.


Our Lord’s crucifixion was the final act of His ministry. It was not enough that Jesus only perform good works to bless the people, nor even that He suffer for the sins of mankind. It was necessary that He die in place of the sinner Adam, who had forfeited his own life by disobedience. Therefore, to balance the scales of Divine Justice Jesus had to give Himself as an equivalent substitute for Adam, a corresponding price, a perfect man for a perfect man. This principle of equivalence is evident from Romans 5: 19:


For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.


Adam died a sinner, cut off from the fellowship of God. The sinless Jesus offered up Himself in place of the sinner. It was necessary, therefore, that Jesus die in the same state of alienation from God. Jesus’ agony at this is apparent from the text quoted in the question. But shortly after, acknowledging the necessity for it, He utters the words recorded in Luke 23: 46:


Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit.


His subsequent resurrection proved that the ‛offering of the body of Jesus Christ’ (Hebrews 10: 10) had been accepted by God, and He was exalted to the right hand of the Father, beloved forever.


Seen this way, it is apparent that the Son on the cross and the Father in heaven are portrayed as separate and distinct beings.



Copyright February 2011

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