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Summary: The fourth word that Jesus uttered on the cross was a word of anguish addressed to the Father. It is found in Matthew 27:46.

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Introduction

It is often profitable to study the last words of dying men. Many sermons have been preached on the last words of Jesus. As he hung on the cross on that first Good Friday he uttered seven short sentences or phrases. We usually call these the “seven last words of Christ.”

For the past few Good Fridays we have been examining these so-called “last words” of Christ.

The first word that Jesus uttered was a word of forgiveness addressed to the Father on behalf of those who were crucifying him: “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34).

The second word that Jesus uttered was a word of salvation spoken to the thief on the cross: “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise” (Luke 23:43).

The third word that Jesus uttered was a word of compassion addressed primarily to his mother who he entrusted into the care of the apostle John: “Dear woman, here is your son” (John 19:25-27).

The fourth word that Jesus uttered was a word of anguish addressed to the Father. It is found in Matthew 27:46:

"About 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?’" (Matthew 27:46)

Lesson

Max Lucado gives the following account in his book titled No Wonder They Call Him Savior.

The summer of 1980 in Miami was nothing to smile about. The Florida heat scorched the city during the day and baked it at night. Riots, lootings, and racial tension threatened to snap the frayed emotions of the people. Everything soared: unemployment, inflation, the crime rate, and especially the thermometer. Somewhere in the midst of it all, a Miami Herald reporter captured a story that left the entire Gold Coast breathless. It was the story of Judith Bucknell. Attractive, young, successful, and dead.

Judith Bucknell was homicide number 106 that year. She was killed on a steamy June 9th evening. Age: 38. Weight: 109 pounds. Stabbed seven times. Strangled.

She kept a diary. Had she not kept this diary perhaps the memory of her would have been buried with her body. But the diary exists; a painful epitaph to a lonely life. The correspondent made this comment about her writings:

"In her diaries, Judy created a character and a voice. The character is herself, wistful, struggling, weary; the voice is yearning. Judith Bucknell has failed to connect; age 38, many lovers, much love offered, none returned."

Her struggles weren’t unusual. She worried about getting old, getting fat, getting married, getting pregnant, and getting by. She lived in stylish Coconut Grove (Coconut Grove is where you live if you are lonely but act happy).

Judy was the paragon of the confused human being. Half of her life was fantasy, half was nightmare. Successful as a secretary, but a loser at love. Her diary was replete with entries such as the following:

"Where are the men with the flowers and champagne and music? Where are the men who call and ask for a genuine, actual date? Where are the men who would like to share more than my bed, my booze, my food. . . . I would like to have in my life, once before I pass through my life, the kind of sexual relationship which is part of a loving relationship."


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