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View daily reading plan: Matthew 27.45-50; Psalm 22.1-3

At His arrest in the garden, Jesus’ disciples “forsook Him and fled”. He made no protest or question, in fact He ensured their safety. And when He stood in Pilate’s Judgement Hall, “friendless, forsaken, despised by all”, He raised no question at the injustice of His trial, never uttered a word of complaint or defence.
But the central one of the seven statements He made while He hung upon the cross was a question, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” Some bystanders thought He was calling upon Elijah. We know He was pleading, “My God, my God, why hast Thou forsaken me?”
In some ways, that poignant question has no answer – hidden in the unfathomable wisdom of the eternal God who planned our salvation. But in Psalm 22 from which He was quoting, one answer is given: “But Thou art holy ...”
In  His holiness, God cannot look upon sin wherever it is found, so when He “laid upon Him the iniquity of us all”, God turned His face away. He forsook the Holy One who had become the sin-bearer. He was utterly alone, “bearing our sins in His own body on the tree”.
Forsaken by His God; between
Two robbers in a godless scene;
As never man has ever been
(I Y Ewan)

Saturday, 30 March, 2024

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