Summary: Taking a look at what it meant to be forsaken by the Father and what Jesus meant by saying, "it is finished".
THE DEATH OF JESUS
1) Forsaken (Matt. 27:45-49). “Later, knowing that all was now completed…” What had happened? Three hours of darkness. This could’ve been the result of God’s provision of an eclipse. I don’t know why exactly but it’s been suggested that it represented evil-Jesus taking on the sins of mankind. I could see this as the fearsome kind of darkness that is felt. “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” This is a pretty sad statement. Jesus is crying out in loneliness and despair as the heavy burden of man’s sins is upon him. It is said that Martin Luther once sat in his study for hours to meditate on this passage. For hours he sat oblivious to the world around him. Finally, someone heard him say, “God forsaking God . . . no one can understand that” and he went on about his business. Spurgeon preached a message on this passage and said, “I think I can understand the words, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" as they are written by David in the 22nd Psalm; but the same words, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" when uttered by Jesus on the cross, I cannot comprehend, so I shall not pretend to be able to explain them.” Both Matthew and Mark note His loud clear cry, addressing God for the only time as anything other than “Father.” The word translated “forsake” means to abandon, to leave behind, or turn away from. Jesus cried out in desperate emotion. Jesus knew he would suffer. He knew he was paying the penalty for the sins of mankind. But he didn’t know how what that would be like. We need to understand that Jesus actually became sin-2nd Corinthians 5:21, “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” The Father had to turn his back on him since in his holiness God cannot look upon sin favorably. In this moment when the Father looked at Jesus he didn’t see his beloved Son, he saw sin. In this moment the Father was repulsed; he was furious but he was also grievous. How amazingly hard it was for these two. There was no greater love shared than between the Father and the Son. Now, there would be no greater hatred right now than what the Father had for the Son since Jesus became sin. God had to hate his own Son. As Luther and Spurgeon exclaimed-who can really comprehend this. I can explain the technicality of it but I can’t come close to explaining the reality of it. If we attempt to grasp the depth of it all we will come vastly short. We need to understand the magnitude of what the Father and the Son endured for us. I talked last week about what Jesus went through physically for us but we also need to understand what he went through spiritually for us; which was far worse than the physical. The gruesome, morbid reality of what Jesus went through in his flogging and crucifixion pales in comparison to his spiritual torture in becoming sin. Engulfed in a place where he would find the complete absence of anything good. Pure evil was Jesus’ existence. While with the Father in heaven he experienced nothing but goodness. He came to earth and experienced both the goodness of God and the ugliness of evil. Now, in becoming sin, he would experience nothing but evil. You can’t get any more extreme opposites than what the Father and the Son chose to endure; all for us.