Every time you come across the image of Jesus Christ hanging on the cross, you actually wonder how this event that occurred almost two thousand years ago can still fill the void in human hearts, to bring hope and new life to those who believe in it. What makes this event amazing and equally controversial is the event itself and the strong validation it gives to the Christian conception of faith and truth, a topic on which many argue and debate time and again in order to disprove or approve based on their perception and understanding.
The famous argument on this conception goes like this. How could a man who couldn’t save Himself save the whole world? A similar question was asked by the Jewish leaders of His time who orchestrated the whole crucifixion. But the beauty of truth is that it never cries out in the street corners or at the rooftops. It has its unique nature of being silent and calm amidst the fake noises of the world. You don’t need to be a Greek philosopher to realize that. So what does the whole message of Jesus hanging on the cross trying to convey? Is there true hope for someone who believes in Him?
Jesus Christ is generally regarded as a religious teacher, a good man, a prophet and a revolutionary who lived in Palestine and went on to spread the message of love, shared details about an unseen kingdom, did some miracles along the way and was crucified for blasphemy by Romans on the influence of the Jewish authorities; those who worship Him as God’s own son and Savior were called Christians. This is the common picture that’s been portrayed about His life and death, with the subject after His death usually regarded as supremely imaginative, like His conception. It’s usually left to the personal view of an individual’s sentiments and faith.
Josephus, a well-renowned historian at the time of Jesus Christ, quotes in his account that Jesus was a good man who lived and reached out to people across Judea doing miracles, signs and wonders. This is where the question arises on why such a good man was crucified and given such a harsh punishment of death? It’s a question worth pondering. Is showing love and healing a crime? The Jewish and Roman authorities thought that their planned execution to get rid of the most popular man in Palestine, Jesus Christ, was a huge success. But little did they know it was the plan of someone else far greater and more powerful, a plan to even save those who crucified Him. Whose plan was that, and who executed it? These questions will open up an answer to that most valid argument on the supremacy of Christ “How a man who couldn’t save Himself can save the whole world?”
In the beginning God created man in His own image, he was good and perfect. But his disobedience took away the glory he had. As he multiplied, sin multiplied along with him and he needed an atonement to cleanse him so that he could be accepted into the presence of God and escape His wrath. As decreed by God, animals were sacrificed as atonement for the remission of sins. But sin persisted in men, and it became clear that it was not these sacrifices that could save us, but that they were instead pointing towards the ultimate sacrifice that would provide atonement to all the sins of the world. A sacrifice not offered by us, but by Him. His love for us made Him to give His own Son Jesus Christ in flesh as a ransom and sacrifice for the cleansing of our sins and to tell the world that I don’t need any other sacrifice for the remission of sins. The blood of Jesus Christ is more than enough to cleanse all sins.”
This is not a well-planned story, but the fulfillment of the record of numerous prophets for thousands of years, with many ancient prophecies confirming this account of God’s wonderful plan in giving a savior in Jesus Christ to cleanse our sins and give new life to those who believe in Him. It’s a huge price God paid to set us free. The whole story of salvation points towards this One Divine Savior.
It was the will of God the Father that Jesus should die in this way, and Jesus willingly took this death upon Himself. This truth need not look convincing, but it can witness within the heart that has accepted Him and experienced His divine forgiveness. God clearly answered our questions on salvation and His plan for us through His Son Jesus Christ. Salvation is not just physical, as it was thought by the Jewish authorities of that time and believed by many of us even today; it is Spiritual. Jesus brings hope for both our body and our soul; it really matters how we regard Him. He died for each and every person in this world irrespective of religion, caste, creed and status. Trusting Him is the only way to God and there is no other way.
Jesus says in John 14:6, “I’m the way, the truth and the life and no one comes to the father unless through me”. It’s true that, to be crucified is such a shame, but the shame that Jesus Christ bore on the cross is the proof of our victory over sin, guilt, condemnation and death because it didn’t stop there. God raised Him from death, He still lives and gives us hope to live and live in eternity with Him.