Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The Passion in Psalm 22

Dr. David R. ReaganPDFBy Dr. David R. Reagan

One thing is certain — the fulfillment of all the prophecies of Psalm 22 in the life of Jesus confirms Him to have been the promised Messiah.

This fact raises a crucial question — the most important question of your life: "Who is Jesus to you?"

When Jesus was tried by the Roman authorities, the Roman governor, Pontius Pilate, asked the assembled mob, "What shall I do with this Jesus who is called the Messiah?" (Matthew 27:22).

This is the most important question in the universe. So, let me put Pilate's question to you: "What will you do with Jesus?"

Will you accept Him as Lord and Savior, as did the thief on the cross (Luke 23:39—43). If so, then you will receive the same promise as did the thief: "You shall be with Me in Paradise" (Luke 23:43).

Or, will you wash your hands of Jesus, as did Pilate? (Matthew 27:24). If so, then your destiny will be one of eternal separation from God in Hell (John 3:16 and Matthew 10:28).

Your eternal destiny — Heaven or Hell — depends upon your answer to one question: "Who do you say that Jesus is?"

An Illustration

I'd like to close with an illustration of the significance of what Jesus did for us on the Cross.

In pioneer days, when wagon trains were crossing this nation to California, there were many things that the wagon masters feared — things such as dried up water holes, Indian attacks, plagues, and blizzards. One of the most fearsome sights was an approaching prairie fire.

In the plains of Kansas the prairie grass would often stand nearly three feet high, and when it was dry it could burn very rapidly. Prairie fires, often started by a lightning strike, could travel as fast as 50 miles an hour, depending upon the winds.

Consequently, when smoke was spotted on the horizon, the wagon master knew he had only minutes to prepare for the protection of his wagon train.

As fearsome and dangerous as the fires were, there is no recorded instance of a wagon train being destroyed by one. The reason is that there was a very proven way to protect the wagons.

What the wagon master would do is quickly start a fire on the opposite side of the train from where the prairie fire was approaching. When the fire had burned away enough, the wagons would then be formed in a circle in the burned out area. When the prairie fire reached them, it would simply burn around them and go on its way.

How does this story relate to the Cross? When Jesus was hanging on the Cross, all the sins that you and I have ever committed and ever will commit were placed upon Jesus, and the wrath that we deserve was poured out on Him.

When you place your faith in Him, you step into the area where the wrath of God has already fallen, and you become immune to the wrath that is to come.

The Bible says that every person on planet earth is under either the wrath of God or the grace of God because those are the two ways in which God deals with sin (John 3:36). Are you under wrath or grace? You can move from wrath to grace by putting your faith in Jesus as your Lord and Savior. Do it today. Do not delay.

What a glorious Savior we have!


Expected Imminently said...

Just an observation and thinking out loud.

Matt27:44 records that BOTH thieves ‘railed’ at Jesus. It appears they both knew the Messianic prophecies, and as he hung there, one thief had his memory stirred, until finally, when the other thief challenged Jesus he positively KNEW, Assented and Trusted in Jesus (which defines Faith). Jesus confirmed that thief’s faith in Him by assuring him (part of faith) the promise of Paradise.

He wasn’t there long because at the resurrection Jesus emptied Paradise and took the OT saints to heaven instead. So all new believers then went/go straight to heaven instead. Such as the Gentile Gaoler who was told “BELIEVE in the Lord Jesus Christ and you SHALL be saved…” Acts16:23. :)

“When you place your faith in Him, you step into the area where the wrath of God has already fallen, and you become immune to the wrath that is to come”.


DrNofog said...

The wagon train analogy is probably the best one I've heard in many years.