Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Forsaken

"And when the sixth hour had come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, 'Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?' which means, 'My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?'" (Mark 15:33-34)

This is the moment the full cup of God’s wrath was poured out on his Son. This is the cup Jesus asked his Father to let pass if it was possible but the Father was silent. Jesus ultimately submitted to his Father’s will obeying to the point of death on a cross (Phil. 2:8) to bear our wrath. This cup was not his but ours. Beaten and bruised, mocked, spit upon, crucified and forsaken for me. This is the saving joy that brought us peace but the horror of our sin. James Montgomery Boice says, “The good news is that sin has been dealt with; that Jesus has suffered its penalty for us as our representative, so that we might never have to suffer it; and that therefore all who believe in him can look forward to heaven.” At the cross sin is paid for, Christ’s righteousness is imputed to us and an eternity with Christ is our reward.

Grace upon grace,
JRL

11 comments:

Nick said...

Jesus was quoting Psalm 22, and applying it to Himself. I don't think your analysis is Biblical at all.

JRL said...

Nick,

Yes, Jesus was quoting Psalm 22 but I'm not sure I'm tracking with you on this one b\c to deny the substitutionary work of Christ on the cross eliminates the gospel (2 Cor. 5:21, Gal. 3:13).

Grace upon grace,
JRL

Nick said...

Well, there is some key nuances here. Jesus died for us, but it was not in the sense of Penal Substitution. 1 Jn 3:16 is a good example of this.

JRL said...

Nick,

I think for the most part we are going to disagree on this one but my concern is your take on the gospel. Christ's righteousness has to be imputed to us through the substitutionary atonement of Christ or we are still dead in our sin. What a glorious message!! "In my place condemned he stood, what a Savior."

I'm also a tad bit confused by your choice of 1 John 3:16 as a defense against Penal Substitution. Are you implying that we must earn salvation through the laying down of our own lives like Christ?

Grace upon grace,
JRL

Nick said...

I don't see why Christ's Righteousness has to be imputed or else we are "still dead in sin." Texts like Eph 2:5 (grace transforms us from death to life) and Romans 6:11 (count yourself dead to sin) don't make sense if an imputed alien righteousness is what makes us dead in sin.

As for my reference to 1 Jn 3:16, my point was that "lay down your life for" need not imply Penal Substitution, else John is calling Christians to do that for their brethren.

JRL said...

Nick,

I'm interested to know whose righteousness you are trusting in for the day you meet God?

Grace upon grace,
Jason

Nick said...

I'm not sure I understand the question. The day you are judged you are awarded a "crown of righteousness" (2 Tim 4:6-8) if you persevered in faithfulness.

JRL said...

Nick,

So you would not affirm that once we are in Christ we receive his perfect righteousness but rather we receive it on the day of judgment?

"If you persevered in faithfulness." By God's sustaining grace this will be true of all his elect. Praise God for his faithfulness.

Grace upon grace,
JRL

Nick said...

I would say we receive God's grace in order to be found worthy on judgment day (Gal 6:7-9). We don't receive "Christ's Righteousness" at all.

JRL said...

Nick,

If I can loving say to you that is a scary place to be. We need Christ's righteousness in order to be accepted in the presence of the Father. Our own righteous deeds are as filthy rags so we have nothing to present to God on judgment day besides the finished work of Christ on the cross and being clothed in his righteousness alone.

"Righteousness delivers from death" (Prov. 10:2, 11:4)

"The righteousness of the upright delivers them" (Prov. 11:6)

"I am the Lord; I have called you in righteousness; I will take you by the hand and keep you; I will give you as a covenant for the people, a light for the nations" (Is. 42:6)

"Shower, O heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain down righteousness; let the earth open, that salvation and righteousness may bear fruit; let the earth cause them both to sprout; I the Lord have created it." (Is. 45:8)

"But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it—the righteousness of God d through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe." (Rom. 3:21-22)

"And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness" (Rom. 4:5)

"For if, because of one man's trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ." (Rom. 5:17)

There are many more but I'll stop here. I know you know your Bible so I'm sure you have read these before but I guess I cannot understand how a person would be ready for the day of judgment without the forgiving blood of Christ (Which you agree with) and the perfect righteousness of Christ. Another resource: http://www.desiringgod.org/ResourceLibrary/OnlineBooks/ByTitle/1592_Counted_Righteous_in_Christ/

Grace upon grace,
JRL

Stephen B. said...

If I may jump in late and comment on some of the earlier comments. I thought Nick's initial statement that Jesus was quoting Psalm 22 was good to make. Jesus did a lot of things with the OT in his mind and often did things with the specific purpose of fulfilling prophecy. So I think it's probably right to say that Jesus was pointing to the whole of that Psalm and showing how it applied to himself.

On the other hand, I wouldn't say that Jason's post wasn't biblical at all. I agreed with all of his main points. I'm not sure that we can say that this verse points to the exact moment at which the wrath of God was completely poured out on Jesus but, according to Mark's account, there isn't much after that of note before Jesus dies.

Nick, I know that you are well informed on the subject of penal substitution. It saddens me that you still deny this clear biblical teaching. I was surprised to see that you would use a text like 1 John 3:16 which shows implications of the death of Christ to the relationship of believers yet you once told me that 2 Cor. 5:21 simply sounds like a Penal-sub text but is insufficient.

It really looks like your heart has become hard to this teaching. I pray that God will make it a reality in your life and that you will praise Him for that.

Grace and Peace,
Stephen