About Jesus    Steve Sweetman

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Who Killed Jesus?

In John 18 we see some soldiers come to arrest Jesus. Should we blame these men for the death of Christ? Later on in John 18 Jesus is confronted by the Jewish leaders. Are these men responsible for killing Jesus? How about Pilate. Maybe he is responsible for crucifying Him. Pilate took Jesus out to the crowd after He was flogged. They shouted, "crucify Him, crucify Him". Was it the crowd who killed our Lord? John 19:23 says that the soldiers killed Jesus. We can put the blame on them and hold Pilate responsible as well. That sounds logical, doesnít it?

Peter, while speaking his very first sermon said, "You men of Israel...with the help of wicked men put Him to death..." (Acts 2:22-23) Peter seemed to think that the Jewish people killed Jesus. I certainly canít argue with Peter, can I? Peter says something else that is interesting in the midst of his accusation against the Jews. In this same passage he says, "this man (Jesus) was handed over to you by Godís set purposeÖ". Wow, Peter is saying that God had something to do with the death of Jesus. How can this be? This is interesting.

Look at Isaiah 53. This scripture tells us who really killed Jesus. Verse 4 says that "we (Israel) considered Him stricken by God, smitten by Him, and afflicted". The Jews thought that God punished Jesus and killed Him for His sin. They were partly right. God did punish Jesus (Isaiah 53:5), but not because He did anything wrong. God punished and killed Jesus because of our wickedness. Isaiah 53:10 says that "it was the Lordís will to crush Him (Jesus)". It is plain and simple. Soldiers may have actually pounded the nails in Jesusí hands but God Himself is responsible for His death. God killed Jesus!

Why would God ever do such a thing? God was extremely angry with us, more angry than we can ever know. God had to save us. Did He have to save us from the world? No! Did He have to save us from the Devil? No! God had to save us from Himself. God saved us from His anger. If Jesus had not been killed, we would have been wiped off the face of this planet by now. Godís Holy Justice would have demanded that. God no longer could tolerate wickedness. Somebody had to be executed for manís wickedness. So God saved us from Himself by killing Jesus. Jesus took our punishment. As a result we are still on this planet thanking Him for showing us mercy.

For those who reject Godís act of mercy "no sacrifice is left, only a fearful expectation of judgement and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God" (Heb. 10:26 Ė 27), "for our God is a consuming fire". (Heb. 12:29) Thanks to Jesus we do not have such an expectation.

 

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