The Suffering of Christ

by Dr. Ken Matto

(John 19:30 KJV) When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.

Today is called Good Friday and it is the day the Lord Jesus Christ went to the cross to pay for the sins of His people all over the world. (Mat 1:21 KJV) And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. (1 John 2:2 KJV) And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. So not only was the death of Christ for those Elect in the first century, His sacrifice will have the power to save all those that God named before the foundation of the world for salvation. Actually, the name “Good Friday” is really not what is should be called. The word “good” is actually the word “God” which is from the Old English which would be early middle ages before the twelfth century. Today is God’s Friday. It is when God enacted the beginning of the end of His salvation program. So many think that it was only the Jews who delivered Christ up and the Romans cruelly treated Him and finally killed Him. All that is true, but it was God who was the one who had to do it for the sins of His Elect.

(Isa 53:10 KJV) Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. The word “pleased” in this verse actually means ”to be pleased or delighted.” It almost sounds cruel that God took pleasure in this horrible moment. Yes, because God knew what was to take place after that far outweighed the moments of pain and suffering. (Heb 12:2 KJV) Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. The word “despising” here means “to set aside or to ignore it” because the momentary shame of the cross was to yield an eternal, redeemed church. As a woman brings a child into the world, she suffers much pain and blood is shed in the process but those few moments of pain brings forth a new life into the world. The pain and suffering of Christ, brought into His Kingdom, a redeemed people without spot or wrinkle.

There are going to be a number of church services tonight all around the world and I can almost guarantee that the great majority of them are going to focus in on the sufferings of Christ to the neglect of the necessity of those sufferings and why He suffered and died. We need to really get passed the sufferings aspect of God’s Friday and get to the heart of the matter. In the Hebrews verse, even Christ set aside those few moments of sufferings knowing what the yield was going to be. We are never going to understand the deepness of the suffering of Christ on the cross because He and His Father have always been together throughout eternity and those few hours when Christ was abandoned by His Father while He became sin for us, is absolutely unknowable by any human being, redeemed or not. So why don’t we go into the churches tonight and see if we can focus on the aspect of why Christ was there to die and let us not only focus on the way He died but the reason and the result should be the foremost in our minds. May you have a blessed God’s Friday and Resurrection Sunday!  (4/18/03)