The Bible speaks volumes about these events, for they are the purpose of Jesus’ coming to earth. His sufferings, death, and resurrection were neither spontaneous nor accidental. They were to take place at a certain “hour” set by the Father, so the Pharisees, the chief priests, and the scribes could not lay their hands on Him before they could kill Him, because “His hour had not yet come.” They were discussed in both the Old and New Testaments. We will look at these events as they were prophesied and see their fulfillment in the New Testament. Also His passions and death were not unforeseen, for about them…
The prophets prophesied in the Old Testament
Behold, My Servant will prosper,He will be high and lifted up and greatly exalted.Just as many were appalled at you, My people, So His appearance was marred beyond that of a man,And His form beyond the sons of mankind. So He will sprinkle many nations, Kings will shut their mouths on account of Him; For what they had not been told, they will see, And what they had not heard, they will understand. (Isaiah 52:13-15 NASB)
He was despised and abandoned by men, a man of great pain and familiar with sickness; And like one from whom people hide their faces, He was despised, and we had no regard for Him. However, it was our sicknesses that He Himself bore, and our pains that He carried; Yet we ourselves assumed that He had been afflicted, struck down by God, and humiliated. But He was pierced for our offenses, He was crushed for our wrongdoings; The punishment for our well-being was laid upon Him, and by His wounds we are healed. All of us, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; But the Lord has caused the wrongdoing of us all to fall on Him. He was oppressed and afflicted, yet He did not open His mouth; Like a lamb that is led to slaughter, and like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, so He did not open His mouth. By oppression and judgment He was taken away; and as for His generation, who considered that He was cut off from the land of the living for the wrongdoing of my people, to whom the blow was due? And His grave was assigned with wicked men, yet He was with a rich man in His death, because He had done no violence, nor was there any deceit in His mouth. But the Lord desired to crush Him, causing Him grief; If He renders Himself as a guilt offering, He will see His offspring, He will prolong His days, and the good pleasure of the Lord will prosper in His hand. As a result of the anguish of His soul, He will see it and be satisfied; By His knowledge the Righteous One, My Servant, will justify the many, for He will bear their wrongdoings. Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great, and He will divide the plunder with the strong, because He poured out His life unto death, and was counted with wrongdoers; Yet He Himself bore the sin of many, and interceded for the wrongdoers. (Isaiah 53:3-12 NASB)
These passages relate the sufferings that Jesus experienced, show the physical condition in which he was,and their purpose: pierced for our sins. Then if we compare these prophecies with the 4 gospels, we will see that they were fulfilled exactly: when the apostles and the band of soldiers came to arrest Jesus, He did not resist, but stood humble and obedient, knowing that this is the will of the Father for which He came into the world; when he was examined before Annas and then before the high priest Caiaphas, Jesus, though He had all the power to deal otherwise with them, did not, He was silent, but emphasized that He is the Son of God, though the gospel of Matthew (26: 57-75) reports that they mocked, spat, slapped, and punched Him, though they had no reason to do so, but were disturbed by the fact that Jesus stated that He is one with God, which called blasphemy and they demanded He be killed for it; when He was brought to Pilate to be tried and given the death sentence for which the Jews insisted so much, Pilate marveled that He did not defend Himself, did not answer the accusations of the people, and did not resist when He was mocked and beaten by his soldiers (John 19: 1-3). Herod also behaved with contempt for Jesus, and clothed him in a shining garment (Luke 23:11).
Intent on satisfying the crowd, Pilate released Barabbas for them, and after having Jesus flogged, he handed Him over to be crucified. Now the soldiers took Him away into the palace (that is, the Praetorium), and they called together the whole Roman cohort. And they dressed Him in purple, and after twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on Him; and they began saluting Him: “Hail, King of the Jews!” And they repeatedly beat His head with a reed and spit on Him, and kneeling, they bowed down before Him. And after they had mocked Him, they took the purple cloak off Him and put His own garments on Him. And they led Him out to crucify Him. (Mark 15:14-20 NASB)
The same attitude was taken by the Lord Jesus when He was crucified and died on the cross, drinking the cup that the Father gave Him and doing His will to the end, so that through His death He would reconcile with God the people because of their sins wer separated from God, and put them in a state according to the will of God, in a state of righteousness. He suffered all this for mankind, so He showed His great love for men, and although He was also the Son of Man, He did not refuse to do the will of the Father, in spite of the pains and wounds He endured. Saving humanity mattered much more! How can we respond to such great love?
On the third day He rose, the first day of the week, and appeared to Mary Magdalene in the garden where He was buried, then to the 11 disciples and showed them His hands and His rib, as proof of the fact that “it is I myself,” and before His ascension He gave them the great commandment: go and make disciples. The resurrection of Jesus is proof that man’s redemption has been fully accomplished and man can be saved by faith in Jesus as the Son of God and a certainty that even those who believe in Him will one day be resurrected.
So the resurrection of Jesus was not a hallucination of the disciples or of the more than 500 people, but was a real, visible, and fulfilled fact of the Scriptures. About His passions, death and resurrection…
Jesus Himself spoke
During the 3 years of work, the main message that Jesus conveyed was to tell people about the Kingdom of God and the way to enter it. During all this time, He also spoke to His disciples about His suffering, death, and resurrection. Here is what He told them:
“You know that after two days the Passover is coming, and the Son of Man is to be handed over for crucifixion.” (Matthew 26:2 NASB)
Then He came to the disciples and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and resting? Behold, the hour is at hand and the Son of Man is being betrayed into the hands of sinners. Get up, let’s go; behold, the one who is betraying Me is near!” (Matthew 26:45-46 NASB)
Or do you think that I cannot appeal to My Father, and He will at once put at My disposal more than twelve legions of angels? (Matthew 26:53 NASB)
He is not here, but He has risen. Remember how He spoke to you while He was still in Galilee,saying that the Son of Man must be handed over to sinful men, and be crucified, and on the third day rise from the dead.” And they remembered His words. (Luke 24:6-8 NASB)
A little while, and you no longer are going to see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me.” (John 16:16 NASB)
The apostles testified
The apostles also confirmed in the New Testament that the events related to the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus took place exactly as prophesied. Here is what the apostle Paul draws our attention to the following:
For I handed down to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. After that He appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep; then He appeared to James, then to all the apostles; and last of all, as to one untimely born, He appeared to me also. (1 Corinthians 15:3-8 NASB)
But when the fullness of the time came, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons and daughters. (Galatians 4:4-5 NASB)
For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. (Romans 5:6 NASB)
It is this Jesus whom God raised up, a fact to which we are all witnesses. (Acts 2:32 NASB)
And He died for all, so that those who live would no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and rose on their behalf. (2 Corinthians 5:15 NASB)
Thus, we see that the suffering, death, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ were foretold before His coming to earth, were foretold by Jesus Himself, and these things were confirmed by the apostles after His ascension. His death offered forgiveness to people whose sinful condition could be washed away only by the blood of Jesus once and for all. May God help us to fully understand these things and to accept His sacrifice as a ransom for our sins and as the only way to be saved and see the Kingdom of God!
Translated by Ina Croitoru