Wednesday 28th August 2019 Prayer Devotion
Scripture Reading:- Psalm 22
Topic:- The Seven Statements Of Jesus On The Cross 
Text:- John 19:26-27
3. The Third Word: Jesus said to His mother: “Woman, this is your son.” Then He said to the disciple: “This is your mother.” John 19:26-27.
Jesus and Mary are together again, at the beginning of His ministry in Cana and now at the end of His public ministry at the foot of the Cross. John is the only Evangelist to record Our Lord’s mother Mary at the Cross. The Lord refers to his mother as woman at the Wedding Feast of Cana. See John 2:1-11.
And in this passage, recalling the woman in Genesis 3:15, the first Messianic prophecy of the Redeemer, anticipating the woman clothed with the sun What sorrow must fill Mary’s heart! How she must have felt meeting her Son as he carried the Cross on the Via Dolorosa. “Behold I make all things new.” And then she had to watch him being nailed to the Cross. Once again, a sword pierces Mary’s soul, Luke 2:35; Revelation 12; 21:5.
The loved one reminded of the prophecy of Simeon at the Presentation of the infant Jesus in the TempleThe loved ones of Jesus are with Him. There are four at the foot of the cross, Mary his Mother, John, the disciple whom he loved, his mother’s sister Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. He addresses his third word to his mother Mary and John, the only eye-witness of the Gospel writers. See Luke 2:35.
4. The Fourth Word: “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? See Matthew 27:46; Mark 15:34.
This was the only expression of Jesus in the Gospels of Matthew and Mark. Both Gospels related that it was in the ninth hour, after 3 hours of darkness, that Jesus cried out this fourth word. The ninth hour was three o’clock in Judea. After the fourth Word, Mark related with a horrible sense of finality, “And Jesus uttered a loud cry, and breathed his last.” See Mark 15:37.
One is struck by the anguished tone of this expression in contrast to the first three words of Jesus. This cry is from the painful heart of the human Jesus who must feel deserted by His Father and the Holy Spirit, not to mention his earthly companions the Apostles. As if to emphasize his loneliness, Mark even has his loved ones “looking from afar,” not close to him as in the Gospel of John. Jesus feels separated from his Father. He is now all alone, and he must face death by himself.
But is not this exactly what happens to all of us when we die? We too are all alone at the time of death! Jesus completely lives the human experience as we do, and by doing so, frees us from the clutches of sin.
His fourth Word is thus His cry from the Cross recalls the cry of Israel, and of all innocent persons who suffer. David makes a striking prophecy of the crucifixion of the Messiah at a time when crucifixion was not known to exist: “They have pierced my hands and my feet, they have numbered all my bones.” The Psalm continues: “They divide my garments among them, and for my vesture they cast lots.” See Psalm 22:16-18.
There can not be a more dreadful moment in the history of man as this moment. Jesus who came to save us is crucified, and He realizes the horror of what is happening and what He now is enduring. He is about to be engulfed in the raging sea of sin. Evil triumphs, as Jesus admits: “But this is your hour.” But it is only for a moment. The burden of all the sins of humanity for a moment overwhelm the humanity of our Savior. See Luke 22:53.
But does this not have to happen? Does this not have to occur if Jesus is to save us? It is in defeat of his humanity that the Divine plan of His Father will be completed. It is by His death that we are redeemed. “For there is one God. There is also one mediator between God and the human race, Christ Jesus, Himself human, who gave himself as ransom for all.”
1. Oh Lord God, give me power and grace to accept what You have for me henceforth by fire, in the name of Jesus Christ.
2. Oh Lord my God, never forsake me but continue to abide with me henceforth by fire till I reign with You in heaven, in the name of Jesus Christ.
3. Oh Lord God, let Your Word dwell in me richly, that Your Word will become part and parcel of me henceforth by fire, in the name of Jesus Christ.
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