The 7 Words of Jesus on the Cross

 

When you examine the words or thoughts of a person under great stress, scrutiny or suffering, you learn the substance of the person; their composition, their faith and their hope.

 

When we examine what our Savior exclaimed on the cross, we can learn about His true character and His integrity before the Father. We can see the love that pours out from His wounds, directed at us! Neither the heat, nor the sweat mixed with the blood, nor the agony and emotional distress distracted Him from having you and me on His mind that day. From these Seven Words of Jesus we can draw strength and courage for our own walk on this earth as we follow His call to be His disciples. He suffered the extreme penalty of death that we may live!

 

Are you living, or you a dead man walking?

 

Between the beatings, flogging and the pain from the crown of thorns on His head, Jesus, sees His mother and the disciple He loved the most:

 

1- John 19:26 When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Dear woman, here is your son,” (27) and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home.

 

Jesus thinks of His family first. His dearly loved mother and what would become of her was Jesus first concern. He wanted her to be taken care of emotionally and physically, not to mention spiritually. Under great stress do you:

 

1- Think of yourself first?

2- Distance yourself from those you love?

3- Seek to blame those you love for not helping you?

 

Remember that stressful times show how close of a relationship you have developed with the Father in Heaven. Those who refresh others, under stressful moments, will themselves be refreshed (Prov 25:13; 2 Tim 1:16)

 

His face is wincing with the pain from the nails in His wrists and feet, His back is shredded and torn from the flogging, an almost unbearable pain. On top of this, people are wagging their heads at Him, cursing Him and hurling insults:

 

2- Luke 23:34 Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.

 

Forgiveness is the center of the Gospel: forgiveness of our sins, the opportunity to be redeemed and restored to a relationship with God! Where there is no forgiveness there is bitterness and regret. Instead of allowing bitterness or antagonism to set in, Jesus thinks of them instead of Himself: He thinks about their ignorance and therefore lost state. Jesus’ view is set on eternity, not on what happens in the present moment: “For the joy set before Him He endured the cross, scorning its shame!” (Heb 12:2) Besides, he knows He is there for them; they have done nothing to Him, and He has willingly given Himself to them, even though they scorn Him.

 

When others insult you or curse you, or show you their distaste or lack of approval, how do you respond?

 

1- Do you allow them to offend you? If you do, then you are only thinking of yourself.

2- Are you able to see past their disapproval of you and into their ignorant state of mind?

3- Are you able to willingly suffer scorn for their sake, shaming their actions and words?

4- Have you forgotten about your forgiveness of sins?

 

If you forgot about your cleansing of your past sin, you are not able to surrender yourself perhaps you are still holding on to some vestige (trace) of your old self. Get rid of it! Therein lies the root of all bitterness! Where there is no forgiveness, there is restlessness and no peace!

 

Suffering from exposure, difficulty in breathing, dizziness, and nausea, Jesus promises paradise:

 

3- Luke 23:43 Jesus answered him, “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.

 

Up until the last moment, Jesus wants people to be with Him forever. That is His focus and the reason He came into the world! Not even the worst moments on earth He could experience would distract Him from loving you to the fullest extent. (Heb 5:7-9)

 

Do you ultimately want the best for those around you, especially those who may have, at one time, scorned you or shamed you? When you are stressed:

 

1- Are you words full of hope and encouragement, or is your selfishness evident by the piercing words you utter because you don’t have time for others?

2- Is your speech full of boasting of what you do and have, or is your speech full of grace and mercy?

 

Do you ultimately want to be alone, or do you want to have those you love around you? Bitterness and regret are reflections of a poor self-image. What you see in others is a reflection of what is in you. If you are full of the spirit and love, your being will radiate this love. If you are empty (full of bitterness and regret) then you will be a black hole of joy and peace.

 

Under the greatest distress yet, feeling abandoned and lonely, desperate even, Jesus cries out to His Father:

 

4- Matt 27:46 About the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?-- which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?

 

At this point, when Jesus is bearing the sin of the world, His cry of frustration is directed at the Father, who alone is able to bear all our burdens!

 

When you can’t take it anymore, do you:

1- React or act upon (keep your cool)?

2- Take it out on those around you or seek the face of the Father?

3- Try to blow off some steam or get on your knees and pray?

 

At the moment of your greatest pain and agony, you can choose to be a vehicle of blessing.

 

After enduring the reality of His separation from the Father, and being at the lowest point in His earthly life, we can testify to the humble humanity of Jesus:

 

5- John19:28 Later, knowing that all was now completed, and so that the Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, “I am thirsty.”

 

He was still human… Tempted with all our temptations and vulnerable to all that affects us; yet submitting to the Father to be perfected… even Jesus! (Heb 5:8-9) God choose us weak vessels to show His strength! When we are weak, and delight in our weakness, we can then let God be glorified through them! Don’t pretend that you are strong! God will humble you!

 

When you are at your lowest:

1- Are you ashamed of you weakness? Do you try to appear strong and independent?

2- Do you resist help or scorn advice because you “feel” patronized?

 

With a simple declaration: “I am thirsty”, Jesus unashamedly shows us His human side on that cross, and God gets the glory!

 

As Jesus’ life wanes before Him, He looks towards the Father and commits Himself unto death, knowing what awaits Him:

 

6- Luke 23:46 Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last.

 

Jesus commits his eternal souls to the Father, which meant submitting and humbling Himself unto death, even death on a cross. Jesus saw His physical life on earth as a clear mission directed from Heaven. He used His life on earth and did not allow Himself to be used or manipulated by anything, including the fleshly temptations He faced. This is why in His death He entrusted Himself to the Father.

 

In whose hands have you committed yourself?

 

1-      Your own? Someone else’s? Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life (John 14:6)

2-      Whose destiny have you chosen? Are you your own man, or are you going to join those whose destiny is eternity through Jesus Christ? Is your life being built on perishable things or on eternal things?

3-      Which path are you walking on? Narrow or wide? Every effort needs to be made to enter the narrow path (Luke 13:24)

 

1 John 3:2 Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.

 

Jesus knows He has accomplished the work the Father sent Him to do, and voluntarily gives Himself up:

 

7- John 19:30 When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.

 

Jesus knew the exact moment of His death, and willingly volunteered Himself as the propitiation for our sins. God’s work of salvation is done and it is available for everyone who wishes to join Him at the great feast in the Kingdom of God.

 

Are you living your life, or have you lived your life in such a way that at this very moment, if Jesus were to present Himself here, you would be able to say: “It is finished! I’m going home!”  Or are there some “loose ends” in your life you have yet to take care of?

 

When all is said and done, all that matters is where will you be in 200 years? Are you living your life in view of where you will be in 200 years? Or do you:

 

1- Live for the moment without regard of any promise for you?

2- Only care to satisfy your cravings of the present without regard for your reputation?

 

A good parent lives in such a way as to prepare their children for the future as they live fully each day. They instill vision in their children. In the same way, we want to live in such a way as to leave a legacy of holiness for those whom we leave behind on the earth, that our work for Jesus may continue on earth as we are in Paradise. We cannot only live for the moment, but in view of the promise of eternity.

 

When Jesus says “It is finished”, He reveals that all along He was living and accomplishing what His Father willed, a careful plan to bring you into Heaven, because of the joy that lays ahead for every individual that allows himself to be washed in His blood.

 

 

The following verses are provided for your meditation, following each of the seven instances Jesus spoke from the cross:

 

How can Jesus words from the cross transform me?

 

1-      Philip 2:3-5 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. {4} Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. {5} Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus…

2-      Col 1:13-14 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, {14} in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. And Heb 12:15 See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.

3-      John 12:27 “Now my heart is troubled, and what shall I say? 'Father, save me from this hour'? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour.” And Heb 5:7-9 During the days of Jesus' life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. {8} Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered {9} and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him…

4-      Luke 22:42 "Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done."

5-      1 Co 1:27 But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. And 2 Co 12:10 That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

6-      Lu 13:24 "Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to.

7-      Heb 4:11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience.