“When they had twisted a crown of thorns, they put it on His head, and a reed in His right hand. And they bowed the knee before Him and mocked Him, saying, ‘Hail, King of the Jews!’ Then they spat on Him, and took the reed and struck Him on the head.”
“Then they crucified Him, and divided His garments, casting lots, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet: ‘They divided my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots.’ Sitting down they kept watch over Him there. And they put up over His head the accusation written against Him: This is Jesus the King of the Jews.”
Today was the day that Jesus was mocked, beaten and tortured for you and for me. It was the day that he was marched to the the hill called Golgotha—the place of the skull—to die a criminal’s death on a wooden cross. Jesus could have called a legion of angels to rescue Him but he knew it was His father’s plan for the salvation of mankind. Take a moment today to say a prayer of thanks for the sacrifice he made for you. Take a moment to picture in your mind the glory that awaits us in heaven—our eternal home—because Jesus endured the cross for us.
Did you know that hundreds of prophecies exist in the Old Testament, written centuries ago, pointing to the the suffering Jesus endured on the cross and in the days leading up to it? Here are some examples:
Isaiah was written between 739 and 686BC! (Before Christ)
“He was oppressed and He was afflicted, yet he opened not His mouth.” Isaiah 53:7 (Mark 15:5)
“He is despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised and we did not esteem Him. Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows.” Isaiah 53:3 (John 1:10-11)
“But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5 (1 Peter 2:24)
Zechariah was written between 520 and 518 BC
“Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey, a colt, the foal of a donkey.” Zechariah 9:9 (John 12:12-15)
Psalm was written between 1400 and 500 BC.
“I am poured out like water and all my bones are out of joint; My heart is like wax; It has melted within me. My strength is dried up like a potsherd, And my tongue clings to my jaws; You have brought me to the dust of death. For dogs have surrounded me; The congregation of the wicked has enclosed me. They pierced my hands and my feet; I can count all my bones. They look and stare at me. They divide my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots.” Psalm 22:14-18 (John 19:23-24 Luke 24:39)
(The number of prophecies fulfilled in the New Testament is really astounding! Check it out for yourself sometime.)
Today, even as we ponder the painful sacrifice made by our Lord, we look forward to celebrating the greatest day in all of history—the resurrection of our Savior!
Spend some time today reading the story of Easter with your family. Help them to understand the profound importance of this Christian holiday. God bless you all!