The Seven sayings of Christ on the Cross
“And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left.”
Christ is now brought to the place of His greatest suffering. The beatings are past but the shame and desertion by God; death, and burial ahead.
But how does He meet them?
Luke 23:34 “Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.
And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.”
The first thing He says on the Cross is: “Father, forgive them.”
He forgave them first. They did not ask for it; but He, as the greatest King, forgave the greatest debt, and He did it first.
The “them”, were those chief priests who tried Him and took Him to Pilate, the Jews who cried “Crucify Him”, and those who stood and mocked Him, even in His miserable suffering.
The people who refused to believe in Him, and the Gentiles, who under Pilate, beat and lead Him away; nailing Him to the Cross.(The Romans harshest type of death.)
As the mocking continues, the malefactors enter in. But then one speaks up for Christ:
Luke 23:40-42 “But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation?
And we indeed justly;…but this man hath done nothing amiss.
And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.”
Here, one is saved, by belief in the Lord; and one is not. For the second thing Jesus said on the cross was another word of forgiveness, and also blessing:
Luke 23:43 “And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be. With me in paradise.”
Then, looking down Jesus saw His mother, and John, the beloved disciple, who was the only one who had followed Him from the Garden to the Cross. He, alone of the disciples, stood at the foot of the cross, ready to be arrested, if necessary, to stay close to Jesus.
So Jesus speaks the third sayings:
John 19:26 “When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!”
John 19:27 “Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.”
Here, Jesus sees to His mother, committing her into the hands of John, the beloved disciple.
She was to look on him as the son she lost.
He was to look on her as his mother, and take care of her, seeing to her in her old age.
This he did, and it is said, that she went with him on his preaching tours; that her bones are buried in the wall of Ephesus.
Six hours the sun had shone down upon all of this suffering.
Luke 23:44-45 “And it was about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour.
The sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst.”
The sun “was darkened”: The awful agony of the sin bearer, fulfilling the suffering of the wrath of God on our sin, was “darkened”. No one but God and Christ, could enter into this propitiation.
God darkened the sun, to show that this was not for view; no one would understand such suffering, and so, no one could truly view it in it’s terror. This suffering went on until He paid the price for all His.
In this time, Jesus spoke the fourth saying:
Matthew 27: 46 ” And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani ? That is to say, My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?”
God forsaking Him was because of our sin; for God can not look upon sin, without wrath. And Jesus was “‘made sin for us”. (2 Corinthians 5:21 “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we may be made the righteousness of God in him.”)
The price paid, Jesus spoke the fifth saying:
John 19:28 “After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst.”
They had offered him wine mingled with myrrh to deaden the pain, earlier; but He refused it. He would feel every moment of pain, that He would be able to pay the full debt of our sin.
Mark 15:23 “And they gave him to drink wine mingled with myrrh: but he received it not.”
But this time, they gave him vinegar.
John 19:29 “Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a sponge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth.”
Then, He spoke the sixth and seventh sayings:
John 19:30 ” When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.”
Luke 23:46 “And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, (That is He cried for all who would hear, to hear “It is finished”) he said, Father, into they hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost.”
Jesus, having finished the work of Expiation, cried out; but then he gave his spirit unto the Father, in the last solemn moment before death.
Christ was our High Priest, who offered Himself as the Sacrifice for sin, for us. In every saying there was love, offered again and again, for those who would receive it.
He drained every drop of suffering for us. And died, was buried, and rose again to give us His Eternal Life.