Forsaken For Our Sake
Verse 46 About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” (which means “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”).
After looking at how God is our rock we turn to how God looked the other way while Jesus hung on the cross.
Jesus has now been hanging on the cross for hours. For the last three hours it has been as dark as night. He has been suffering alone as He can’t see, with physical eyes, those He loves that are there during these darkest hours of His earthly life. But the biggest pain He is enduring now is His being forsaken by the Father.
The definition of forsaking is: to depart or go away from; to renounce; to desert or turn away from in any degree; to abandon or withdraw from.
From eternity past Jesus and God had been one. Jesus coming to earth didn’t make Him any less God and yet here we find Jesus feeling separated from the Father for the first time ever. But why would the Father forsake Him in His darkest hour? For us. It was our sin that Jesus was bearing on the cross. Our sin required a pure sacrifice and only Jesus could offer that perfect sacrifice. But for Him to do that God had to depart because God can’t look on sin.
In this darkest of times of Christ’s earthly life He doesn’t turn away from who He is to denounce God. He turns to God and cries out using the words of His earthly ancestor, David (Psalm 22:1). Jesus knew that even though God couldn’t look at the sins of His people that He could call on Him. As we said yesterday, David had many times in his life that he felt like he had no one else to turn to but God. Not only did David cry out to God, he poured out his heart to God.
We have those times in our lives too. Those times in our lives when we feel we have no one else to turn to. He wants us to turn to Him. But why do we wait for those moments to cry out to Him? He will never forsake us so why do we act like He has? His forsaking Christ on the cross should give us reason to pause and reflect on the fact that He was forsaken so we never will be.
Making It Personal
When is a time in your life that you felt forsaken? How did you cope with being forsaken? Do you cry out to God regularly?
Making It Personal Kids
How much does God hate sin? Why did Jesus die on the cross? Who can we turn to when we are feeling like we have no one else?
Father, thank You for never forsaking us. Jesus, thank You for taking the abandonment of the Father on our behalf. We know we can turn to You in our times of trouble but may we learn to seek You even in the good times. In Jesus’ name, amen.