Jesus is forsaken by God

Last updated on April 19, 2021


And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46)

Jesus and the Father are one (e.g. John 10:30). They have been one from eternity, living in intimate and loving unity. But in this moment of suffering on the cross, Jesus cries out: “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”.

Jesus is bearing the sins of humanity (2 Corinthians 5:21). These sins create a chasm between God and the sinner – in this case between God the Father and God the Son. Jesus Christ has “become a curse for us” (Galatians 3:13), and therefore the Father forsakes him. That’s one of the deepest and most incomprehensible statements of the Bible. God forsakes God, because of the sins of humanity.

Only by Jesus’ atoning death, this chasm can be overcome. Jesus knows that. His cry of anguish is a quote from Psalm 22, which ends in a song of praise for the Lord, who “has not hidden his face from him, but has heard, when he cried to him” (verse 24).

Jesus was willing to be forsaken by God, so that believers would never be. So deep is his love!

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