They beat Him…to the point that He was unrecognizable. With each blow His blood was splattered. With each blow they laughed and mocked Him. With each blow He was spat upon. Yet He endured. But the beating wasn’t enough….they yelled and shouted, “CRUCIFY HIM!” As the prophesy foretells, Jesus must be crucified. Oh how He died. The nails were driven into His hands, they were driven into His feet, and a crown of thorns was placed on His head. Yet He endured. While He was on the cross more laughter and more mockery took place. They said to Him, “save Yourself! If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross.” More mockery, “He saved others; Himself He cannot save.” And yet even more mockery, “If He is the King of Israel, let Him now come down from the cross, He trusted in God; let Him deliver Him.” Yet He endured. In His final hour, He cried out to God, His Father. For the first time in Jesus’ life He felt what it was like to be forsaken. The sins of the world, our sins, caused God to turn His back on His only Son. Yet He endured. “It is finished, “ He cried and gave up His spirit. He was pierced in His side to make sure that He was dead and then laid in a “borrowed” tomb. The prophesy then foretells that in three days He will rise again. And He has.

Jesus, a man who did no harm, took on the sins of this world. He was the ultimate sacrifice. He was the Lamb that was slain. The nails in his hands and feet were not just ordinary nails. No, as they drove the nails into His flesh, our sins were being nailed into His blood. His bloodshed covered our sins; we are given grace and mercy and more importantly the opportunity to serve a risen Savior. That’s the meaning of Jesus’ crucifixion. His death had a purpose. God saw the wickedness of man, and knew that He was going to have to send His Son to save us from ourselves. Sometimes I wonder what life would have been like if Jesus never died. How different would life be?

But the fact remains that He did die. He was beaten, laughed at, scorned, mocked and most of all hated. Yet He endured. Not one time did Jesus give up and tell God that He was quitting. Not one time did Jesus walk away from His purpose, not one time did Jesus sin. Not one time. Even when God left Him, He still endured. He was crucified. And now He sits at the right hand of God interceding on our behalf.

The last twelve hours of Jesus’ life were crucial. Yet He endured. Think about the beating He went through, the pain of the nails driven into His flesh, the loneliness of God forsaking Him. Isn’t this enough to compel you to live a life worthy of righteousness? Is this not enough for you to realize that Jesus went to hell and back just for us? When you look at the cross, what do you see? After all Jesus went through for us, we want life on our terms. Jesus was beaten for us, but we won’t share the Good News with people. Jesus was laughed at and mocked, but we want to keep our relationship with God to ourselves. Jesus was pierced in His side, but we want to live one foot in the world and one foot for God. Jesus rose from the grave with all power in His hands, but we want Him as our Savior and not our Lord. We want the benefits of being a Christian but we don’t want to work for them. We don’t want to earn them; we want them handed to us on a silver platter. Jesus did what He did for us, and we won’t endure the trials of life. We won’t live a life pleasing to Him. We won’t deny ourselves to follow Him. He died so we could live……who are you living for?

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