The Rejection of Christ
Scheduled for September 7
first glance it appears most curious that Jesus, the Messiah, would be rejected
by the Jews. Consider what God did to prepare the Jews for His coming:
First, over the period of many
thousands of years, there are many prophecies recorded with regard to the
coming of “The Holy One.” Both explicit and implicit, they were studied so
well that the authorities knew even where he was to be born.
Over the final two thousand years
of that time, from Moses until his birth, God had consistently been in contact
with (and disciplining) those same Jews. He was hammering into their heads the
kind of God He is.
At a deeper and more mystical
level, all the Old Testament worship practices were forerunners of the things
to come. In the animal sacrifices -- especially Passover -- we can see the
picture of the Christ.
all this, Israel rejected her Messiah. Indeed, this rejection was prophesied
as well in the Old Testament. Such rejection was seen as necessary.
It was necessary that the Jews
reject the Messiah so that the good news -- we are inclined to forget the
meaning of the word “gospel” -- could be spread outside the boundaries of
It was necessary that the “Son of
Man” experience this, that He might have full sympathy with us. To be the
perfect sacrifice, He must be fully human. To be perfect, He must be fully
is a time when we may contemplate the rejection which Christ suffered on our
behalf. Consider how he was rejected:
His own closest friends and
followers -- men whom he had taught for three years, living with them daily in
rugged conditions -- abandoned him as soon as the official oppression began.
The nation of Israel, in the
persons of its leaders, officially rejected him. This was the same group of
men who studied the Scriptures so diligently that they knew where he would be
born, and yet they could not recognize him as Messiah.
On the cross itself, we hear the
cry of the greatest rejection of all: “My God, My God, why have you forsaken
me?” He who knew no sin became sin for us, rejected as sin must be rejected by
a holy God.
well, then, what your Lord went through. The emblems passed are to remind you
that your Lord was rejected by Heaven and earth -- for you.