Who Crucified the Lord?
I took this photo at the Jesus in the City parade in Toronto. At first I wanted to make everything black and white except for the robe of the actor who is portraying our Lord Jesus Christ, then I realized this will make the robe the center of attention so I changed my mind. Here I just want to talk about the crucifixion.
In 2004 a non-Christian co-worker told me that he went to watch The Passion of the Christ movie and said it was very brutal then added, “But it wasn’t the worst [physically] torture that anyone had endured.” Of course, he was right: our Lord did not endure the most physical torture in the history of mankind, because some men were crucified for days before they died, many others died more horrible physical deaths. As far as we know the two thieves who were crucified alongside our Lord died a more painful physical deaths because they had their legs broken. I want to make this clear because it’s un Biblical to think that our Lord paid for our sins because of the physical pain He went through. The crucifixion is not about the physical torture, or the crown of thrones, or the crimson robe—the crucifixion is not about the method–even though the crucifixion was chosen because it is an “open shame” (Hebrews 6:6) way to die–but about the person being crucified. Jesus Christ’s sinlessness is what made the crucifixion unique: He was able to bear our sins on the cross because He is the sinless Son of God. Another thing to note is that the real agony of the cross is that for the first time the sinless Son was separated from the Holy Father because the Son bore the sins of mankind, so we don’t have to be separated from the Father.
If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame. Hebrews 6:6
Finally, after the release of The Passion of the Christ there was a notable anti-Semitism because the Jewish people were accused of being the crucifiers of the Christ since they are the descendants of the Jews that wanted the Christ crucified about 2,000 years ago. My answer to this is twofold. First, humanly speaking, it’s foolish to blame a people of what their forefathers did over two centuries ago–that’s the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard! Second, spiritually speaking, if that’s how you think then you know nothing about the Bible and you are as lost as they get. Let me explain:
The Jews did not crucify our Lord, nor did the Romans or Pontius Pilate. You say, I know, “Our sins crucified the Lord”, technically speaking even that is incorrect. You see, our sins coupled with God’s justice, hatred of sin, love and mercy for mankind were the reasons behind the crucifixion but reasons cannot do actions—persons do actions. Let me give you an example. You say you play soccer to stay in shape, so staying healthy is the reason behind you playing soccer but you don’t say, “My health is playing soccer”—you play soccer. So ‘our sins’ is the partial answer to “Why was our Lord crucified?” But what is the answer to, “Who crucified our Lord?” The Bible says in Isaiah 53:10:
“Yet it was the LORD’s will to crush him [Jesus Christ] and cause him to suffer,”
And what does our favorite Bible verse, John 3:16, say? “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” God the Father gave His one and only Son as a sacrifice for mankind. Who was going to sacrifice Isaac? Was it Abraham’s obedience? Was it Abraham’s knife? No, it was Abraham! Abraham’s obedience was the reason, and his knife was the tool, but they definitely were not the sacrificer—the father was. Just as Abraham was willing to sacrifice his son for God, God sacrificed His son for mankind.
“He [God the Father] who did not spare his own Son [Jesus Christ], but gave him up for us all…” Romans 8:32