“One Cry A Cry of Loneliness”
Thesis: Jesus cry, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me!” is a desperate cry of loneliness. I believe this was the worst and the most horrible moment of the crucifixion for Jesus. When sin invaded His life and the Father walked away! He felt totally alone! His one cry reveals to us the depth of His suffering for us!
Scripture Text: Mark 15:33-39
33At the sixth hour darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour. 34And at the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?“—which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
35When some of those standing near heard this, they said, “Listen, he’s calling Elijah.”
36One man ran, filled a sponge with wine vinegar, put it on a stick, and offered it to Jesus to drink. “Now leave him alone. Let’s see if Elijah comes to take him down,” he said.
37With a loud cry, Jesus breathed his last.
38The curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. 39And when the centurion, who stood there in front of Jesus, heard his cry and saw how he died, he said, “Surely this man was the Son of God!”
Video Movie Clip: One cry – a cry of loneliness
Mark’s Gospel reveals the one cry recorded by Jesus at the crucifixion. Mark’s Gospel is written from Peter’s view point and it only emphasizes one agonizing lonely cry.
Why would Peter only include in his account the one cry of Jesus on the cross? Could it be that Peter could relate to this point of the crucifixion. It stands to reason from what the other Gospel writers recorded that Peter was deeply impacted by this moment in time. His re-telling of what he heard about the crucifixion centers in on Jesus’ One cry. We know that He was not there because he had denied Christ the night before. He had fled and maybe he had already started heading back to his home town and back to his old trade of fishing. Maybe he remembers this time on the cross because of what he was doing at that same time. Could it be that he was at this horrible moment for Jesus walking back home in utter defeat. He was upset crying, weeping and having to face the separation between Him and Jesus? He had denied Jesus the one he loved! How could he have done that? Could it be this moment in time sticks out to him because he would have known the pain of being alone with sin rushing through over his life. He was facing it at the same time! Could it be that Peter knew how special Jesus relationship with ‘Abba” Father was? Peter being close to Jesus would have known how deeply the Father’s separation from Jesus would have hurt His Lord. He knew how lonely and hurtful it would have been for Jesus at this point in time. Peter knew the feeling when you are separated from the one you love the most? Remember Peter experienced what happens when you reject the Lord and fall into sin. He was even warned by the Lord but he fell prey to temptation and denied the Lord 3x and then the rooster crowed. He knew the pain and agony of it all. So he chooses to put in one lonely cry at the crucifixion. Maybe when he heard about the “One cry” from the others his mind reflected back to his nightmare of denial and the lonely feeling of rejection?
69Now Peter was sitting out in the courtyard, and a servant girl came to him. “You also were with Jesus of Galilee,” she said. 70But he denied it before them all. “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he said. 71Then he went out to the gateway, where another girl saw him and said to the people there, “This fellow was with Jesus of Nazareth.” 72He denied it again, with an oath: “I don’t know the man!” 73After a little while, those standing there went up to Peter and said, “Surely you are one of them, for your accent gives you away.” 74Then he began to call down curses on himself and he swore to them, “I don’t know the man!” Immediately a rooster crowed. 75Then Peter remembered the word Jesus had spoken: “Before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times.” And he went outside and wept bitterly.
Peter leaves this painful moment of his life out of his input into the Gospel of Mark but when he had heard about Jesus cry on the cross he had to include it. I believe when he heard about His cry it hit Him hard. Maybe he cried, “He did this for my denial and for my sin of rejection!” “He lost his intimate relationship with “Abba” so that I could be forgiven for my sin of rejecting Him.” Maybe that day when He was walking home he thought, “How could He ever love me again! I betrayed Him just like He said I would.” Peter knew the pain of sin and its lonely hopeless feeling. He knew the pain and suffering that went along with being separated from His Lord. It hurt and it tore his heart apart. So he made sure that Jesus one cry was placed in his account of the crucifixion. He did not want the readers of the Gospel to forget this horrible moment of Jesus.
Jesus’ lonely cry of, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me!” is a desperate cry of loneliness. I believe this was the worst and the most horrible part of the crucifixion for Jesus. I believe it was worst than the beatings, the betrayal of Judas, the desertion of the disciples, the humiliation of the crucifixion, the being spit upon, the crown of thorns, the nails in His hands, the mocking, the emotional torment, and even the mental torment. None of these compared to what He is facing at this moment on the cross. This was the worst moment of the crucifixion. Jesus is all alone at this moment in His life. Not even the Father is with Him. This one cry reveals the horror of the moment for Him.
T.S. - Can you hear His lonely cry?
I. Jesus’ one cry of loneliness reveals the loss of His intimate relationship with the Father.
a. Jesus had never been out of God’s presence before. God the Father “Abba” was always right there with Jesus. These two were in the habit of communicating on a daily basis.
i. Just read the Gospel’s and you will see that they had an active vibrant relationship. They loved each other and they communicated with each other on a regular basis.
b. Jesus received His strength in the garden because He was not totally alone. His strength to say yes to the Father was associated with their closeness. Yes, it was a very lonely moment for Jesus but it was the depth of their relationship that helped Him to say, “Not my will but yours be done!” They wrestled together there in the darkness and Jesus wanted to know if there was any other way. But God said, “No there was no other way!” Jesus asked if He could by pass this torture and this humiliation of the crucifixion. But God said, “ It’s the only way!” Jesus responded after much mental and emotional struggle with “Yes Lord!” Why because He knew what the Father’s will was and he choose to follow it.
i. I watched this garden scene this week from The Passion of the Christ again and it reminded me how alone Jesus was in the Garden, but then it hit me, “He still had the Father!” He still had His strength in the midst of a desperate lonely moment. He still had His hope and His rock. God was still with Him at this time. God gave him the ability to face the rage of the enemy and to press on to the crucifixion. He was not totally alone at this horrible moment God was with Him.
ii. But when I hear His cry of loneliness it hits me, “This one cry from Jesus reveals His lonely state. He is without His “Abba” Father He has departed from Him.” Then I am reminded “Mike He did this for you!”
T.S. - Jesus’ one cry revealed the impact of the loss of His intimate relationship with “Abba” Father. It cut deep into the heart and soul of Jesus and it illustrates to us what happens when sin takes over a life.
II. Jesus one cry of loneliness reveals the consequences of sin- separation from the Father.
a. As I watched The Passion I came to the part of the crucifixion were He cried out in pain with these words, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me!” And I saw something I never saw before. This moment in time is freeze framed into my mind and into my heart.
i. I picked up my Bible and re-read this passage again and the Lord illuminated my mind with this thought.
1. The darkness has settled in at this point, the physical agony is ripping at Jesus’ life. Then it happens it’s a flash flood of something foreign to His very nature. Sin enters into His sinless life. Yes, sin invades like a Cancer into His being and the horror of sin rushes over Him.
b. I thought about the darkness for a moment and this thought entered my mind, “The darkness of the day is reflective of the darkness that invaded the light of the world. Light has been invaded by the darkness and the loneliness of sin is setting in.”
i. You might be thinking, “Why did God the Father leave His beloved Son?” The reason is: Because at this moment in history Jesus became sin for us! And God has no relationship with sin! He cannot because He is a holy God!
ii. Peter gives us insight into this moment in time when he states:
1. 1 Peter 2:21-25: 21To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps. 22 “He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.” 23When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly. 24He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed. 25For you were like sheep going astray, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.
a. The pain and the suffering of Jesus reached its peak right here at this moment in the crucifixion. His father “Abba” turned away from Him because of the sin factor.
b. Remember God is holy and because He is holy He can not embrace sin. God always turns from that which is sin and He will always distance Himself from sin.
c. God always will reject a life filled with unrepentant sin.
i. Let me ask again” “Can you hear His desperate cry?
ii. Whenever sin infects a life the Father has to walk away because he is holy and sin has no part of His nature.
iii. When something is holy it means it is pure and without sin.
iii. Jesus the Son of God – one part of the Trinity was abandoned by the Father because at this point in His life sin was rampant through His life.
1. Jesus took on Himself the sin of the world – He took on Himself my sin and He then paid the price for sin with His death.
a. He chose to follow the Father’s will because He was driven by love!
b. He chose to be temporally abandoned by the Father for my sin and for your sin.
c. His one cry reveals that it cut all the way down into his heart and into His soul.
i. It is obvious from Jesus’ one cry that separation from the Father caused Him deep distress.
1. Let me pause and ask a question of all you Christians today: “Does it bother you if you are out of the presence of the Lord?”
ii. As I prepared for this message I heard His one loud agonizing cry of loneliness?
1. Can you hear here it this morning?
c. The light is fading as sin takes over the life of Christ. He hangs their in agony of spirit and soul as sin eats at His holiness. Then the most horrible moment in the Life of Christ happens -- God walks away from Him.
i. God His “Abba Father” walks away from Him in His agony because sin has enveloped Jesus. Jesus sees God departing from sin – He experiences utter loneliness for the first time in His life and He cries out in desperation, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
1. In essence He cries, “Where are you going God! Please don’t leave me! Don’t leave me to face this horror all alone!”
a. Let me ask you this morning – “Can you hear His lonely cry?”
i. Remember He did this for you! The Son of God suffered rejection so that you would not be rejected by God.
ii. Jesus suffered alienation so that you did not have too!
2. He’s crying out, “I need you God! I am all alone God! Please don’t desert me God!”
a. My friend this is indescribable pain and suffering crying out. This one cry reveals the horrible consequence of sin.
i. This is abandonment crying out in agony! This is a horrible moment in the life of Jesus.
ii. This is a horror movie for Jesus. This is the worst part of the whole crucifixion. God has departed from Him and He is all alone for the first time in His life
iii. As I observed this it once again hits me “Jesus did this for me!” He also did it for you!
T.S. - Jesus one cry reveals not only the agony of the crucifixion and the consequence of sin but also the depth of His love for us.
III. Jesus’ one cry reveals His love for us. (Personal application)
a. I want you to think about this for a moment. Jesus the Son of God chose to take upon Himself the sin of the world so that you and I could be set free. He did this for you and for me!
i. Jesus’ most important personal relationship - the thing that He valued the most was His relationship with “Abba” Father.
ii. His relationship with “Abba” gave Him purpose, it gave Him hope, it gave Him strength, and it gave Him life. But when He became enveloped in sin He lost His most important reason for living. He lost his most valuable relationship. This is why He cried out to His Father. It hurt deeply and it pierced His heart and His mind more so than the spear or the nails. It wrenched deep into His soul and His spirit. But God had no choice He could not, nor would He ever embrace sin - even in His own beloved Son. Therefore Jesus experienced the worst ordeal He could have ever imagined the loneliness of rejection by His Father. We need to remember that rejection of the Father is the consequence of un-repented sin.
iii. But here is the most amazing part of the Gospel. He did it willingly so that you and I could have a relationship with the Father!
1. He surrendered His intimate relationship with the Father so that you and I could have an intimate relationship with the Father.
a. The Lord Almighty is bound by the nature of love to reject sin and to walk away from anything that is contaminated with it. The result of sin is utter isolation from God.
b. In my many years of ministry I have talked with many people who have said that “My worst nightmare in life was when I felt I was all alone and abandoned and nobody cared for me!”
c. They related to me that it was those lonely horrible moments were sin was in control and dominating their lives. Many faced this horrible moment in life and some even commit suicide because they could not bear the loneliness and hopelessness of this time.
d. I can say that my loneliest point in my life came when one I felt abandoned and hopeless. I was living a life of sin and I knew I was all alone and without joy. But in this moment of time I choose to cry out to God. Do you know what? He heard my cry and He spoke to me and said, “Mike there is a way out of loneliness and this hopelessness and it’s found in Jesus.” He spoke to my heart and said, “You don’t have to live like this any more because I paid the price for you!” I decided at this point in my life to listen to the Lord and to do things His way by committing myself to Him.
i. Shortly thereafter: My soul, spirit and body were filled with His wonderful love and at that moment in my life I knew Jesus would never leave me nor forsake me. I would never again be alone crying out in the darkness of sin and its loneliness ever again. I had found my Lord and it changed my life.
ii. When I repented of my sin “He heard my one cry!”
b. But I am also reminded and taught this important lesson from observing this moment of the crucifixion! Don’t allow sin into my life guard it!
i. I must ruthlessly protect my life from sin because when sin comes in and resides -- God has to leave and that creates a horrible moment of loneliness. I never want to experience this instead I want to experience the wonderful feeling of love living inside of me.
ii. I have decided I never want to be alone in the dark ever again. Instead I want to live in the light of love.
Here is the good news for us this morning. Each of us -- every one of us received in that moment of time a great and precious gift. It is the gift of the presence of the Father – the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Jesus paid the price for your sin and you do not have to experience loneliness any more! Because of this one cry we understand that life without the presence of the Lord – is a horror movie filled with fear and loneliness. It is filled with despair and hopelessness. But because of the sacrifice of Jesus we now have the privilege of the presence of God in our lives if we are a faithful believer.
So let me ask again: “Do you hear His lonely cry?” Remember He did this for you so that you would not have to go through the loneliness any more!
Jesus says, “I am the way the truth and the life no man comes to the Father except through me!”
Are you tired of being along? Then embrace Jesus today by repenting of your sin, open up your heat and let the Savior in, and then you will not have to cry in the darkness any more! Instead you will be filled with the love and the presence of the Lord.
We have a way to our Father through Jesus Christ today and that is what makes this horrible Friday mentioned in the Gospel and turns around and calls it Good Friday – His sacrifice makes it good for us!
Our passage of Scripture ends with an observation by the soldier at the cross. He stood there and heard His one agonizing cry of loneliness and then saw how He died. He witnessed the darkness roll in and experienced the earth quake. It shook him to his core.
Scripture tells us what happens next:
He heard His cry! He saw how He died! And it changed this soldier’s life! How do I know listen to what he says, “Surely this man was the Son of God!”
Have you heard His cry today?
His one agonizing cry of loneliness was so that you could experience the joy of His love.
Have you seen how He died?
Jesus is still crying out today to you today and His one cry is echoing across this world, “I love you!”
Can you now say, “Surely this man is the Son of God the Savior of my life!”