“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” – John 3:16
LIGHT FOR NOW: The love of God for man was displayed on the cross of Jesus.
In our previous study where we examined the ‘giving of Jesus’, it was clear that the giving of Jesus happened on the cross and we saw that the so love of God was seen on the cross. Thus, it is safe to say that the depth of God’s love for man is seen on the cross. Now, recall in the last study that Jesus was in constant fellowship with the Father before the cross. Hence the reason He kept calling God Father. However, something happened on the cross where we see the depth of God’s love for man; Jesus lost that fellowship with his Father on the cross because of man. So, what happened to Jesus on the cross that made Him lose that fellowship He had with the Father? Jesus was made sin on the cross; He was made a curse on the cross; Jesus died the death of a criminal on the cross; Jesus was convicted on the cross; He died without defense on the cross. All of what happened to Jesus on the cross was the demonstration of God’s love for man. He was not a sinner but He was made a sinner on behalf of man (substitution), He became a curse for us and thus since He had taken our place, then the death He died was not the death of a good man, neither was it martyrdom, rather it was the death of a criminal.
When all these happened to Jesus on the cross, God could not behold His son any longer, He had to turn his back from His son for the first time (he walked out of fellowship) because Jesus has now become an accursed thing for us and Jesus cried out with a loud voice, My God my God, why hast thou forsaken me. This is well captured in Mark 15:35 which reads, “And at the ninth hour, Jesus cried out with a loud voice saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabacthani? Which is, being interepreted, My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?” Jesus now on the cross for the first time addresses His father as God and not Father. This is because He had lost fellowship and relationship by Him becoming man’s substitute. Was Jesus cry a cry for help? No, it wasn’t. This was a cry of the agony of sin. Jesus was not calling God for help, it was a cry of the agony of sin. Note the word ‘forsaken’ used here being translated means to abandon. That is, Jesus was abandoned on the cross for man’s sake. He walked out or lost the fellowship He had with the father so that man and God can be united in fellowship upon His resurrection. What manner of love is this, that God will forsake God (Jesus who is God manifest in human flesh) on the cross because of the salvation of man. This is love at the highest depth.
INSTRUCTION: Never lose sight of the fact that you are so loved by God.
PRAYER: Thank you Lord for the absolute display of your love for me as seen in the giving of your son Jesus on the cross which has made me eternally saved and in an eternal union with you, in Jesus Name. Amen.
QUOTE: Jesus is the expression and the disposition of God’s love for humanity.
DAILY BIBLE READING: MORNING: COLOSSIANS CHAPTER 1; EVENING: EPHESIANS CHAPTER 1