Jesus forsaken?

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by qwerty, Nov 8, 2001.

  1. qwerty

    qwerty
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    Some teach that Jesus was forsaken by the Father while Jesus was on the cross.
    That is, the Father turned away from Jesus while Jesus was on the cross.
    They interpret the verse “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” to mean this.

    Two questions:

    1. When did the Father turn back towards Jesus? How do we know this?

    2. If the Father turned away from Jesus, then who was Jesus talking to when he said, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit”? (Jesus made this statement about 1 minute after he said “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me.)
     
  2. John Wells

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    Qwerty,
    I can’t possibly answer your questions any better than the following:
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>God provides a way of redemption for us that is not limited to an intellectual elite, but is so crass, so crude, that the primitive person can comprehend it, and, at the same time, so sublime that it brings consternation to the most brilliant theologians. But I particularly like the second word, obscene. It is a most appropriate word because the cross of Christ was the most obscene event in human history. Jesus Christ became an obscenity. The moment that he was on the cross, the sin of the world was imputed to him like it was to the back of the scapegoat. The obscenity of the murderer, the obscenity of the prostitute, the obscenity of the kidnapper, the obscenity of the slanderer, the obscenity of all those sins, as they violate people in this world, were at one moment, focused on one man. Once Christ embraced that, he himself became the incarnation of sin, the absolute paragon of obscenity.
    It is an obscene symbol that we display to the world, the symbol of the cross. There is a sense in which Christ on the cross was the most filthy and grotesque person in the history of the world. In and of himself he was a lamb without blemish—sinless, perfect, and majestic. But by imputation, all of the ugliness of human violence was concentrated on his person.
    Once sin was concentrated on Jesus, God cursed him. When the curse of the law was poured out upon Jesus, he experienced pain that had never been suffered in the annals of history. I have heard graphic sermons about the excruciating pain of the nails in the hands, of hanging on a cross, and of the torturous dimensions of crucifixion. I am sure that they are all accurate and that it was a dreadful way to be executed, but literally thousands of people in world history have undergone the excruciating pain of crucifixion. Only one man has ever felt the pain of the fullness of the unmitigated curse of God upon him. When he felt it, he cried out, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Mark 15:34, NIV). Some say he did that simply to quote Psalm 22. Others say he was disoriented by his pain and didn’t really understand what was happening. God certainly did forsake him. That is the whole point of the atonement. Without forsakenness, there is no curse. God, at that moment in space and time, turned his back on his Son.
    The intimacy of the pros relationship that Jesus experienced with the Father was ruptured (at least in his human nature). At that moment God turned out the lights. The Bible tells us that the world was encompassed with darkness, God himself bearing witness to the trauma of the hour. Jesus was forsaken, he was cursed, and he felt it. The word passion means “feeling.” In the midst of forsakenness, I doubt if he was even aware of nails in his hands or thorns in his brow. He was cut off from the Father. It was obscene, yet it was beautiful, because by it we can someday experience the fullness of the benediction of Israel. We will look unveiled into the light of the countenance of God. - Sproul, R.C. (1996, c1991). Following Christ. Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>God bless! - John
     
  3. qwerty

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    Interesting reply. I don't think it addressed my questions at all. I have seen this explanation before, but I can't find this explanation in the Bible.

    If Jesus was forsaken, why doesn't somebody have an explanation of when the Father turned back towards Jesus?

    Can't we just make one up, just like somebody made up the story about how the Father turned his back on Jesus?
     
  4. Chris Temple

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    Excellent post John from and excellent theologian.
     
  5. Barnabas H.

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by qwerty: If Jesus was forsaken, why doesn't somebody have an explanation of when the Father turned back towards Jesus?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    You got this backward friend! God the Father never turned away from Jesus, His only begotten Son. Where did you get that notion that He did? Adam Clark (1762-1832) had an interesting view of Mark 15:34c My God, my God, why has thou forsaken me?

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Adam Clark wrote: "My God! My God! to what sort of persons hast Thou left Me?" The words thus understood are rather to be referred to the wicked Jews than to our Lord, and are an exclamation indicative of the obstinate wickedness of His crucifiers, who steeled their hearts against every operation of the Spirit and power of God. Through the whole of the Sacred Writings, God is represented as doing those things, which, in the course of His providence, he only permits to be done. Therefore the words, "To whom hast Thou left or given Me up?" are only a form of expression for "How astonishing is the wickedness of those persons into whose hands I am fallen!" If this interpretation be admitted, it will free this celebrated passage from much embarrassment, and make it speak a sense consistent with itself, and with the dignity of the Son of God. The words Mark 15:34 agree pretty nearly with this translation of the Hebrews: "To what [sort of persons, understood] hast Thou left me?" But whatever may be thought of the above mode of interpretation, one thing is certain, viz., that the words could not be used by our Lord in the sense in which they are generally understood. This is sufficiently evident, for He well knew why He was come unto that hour; nor could He be forsaken of God, in whom dwelt all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. The Deity, however, might restrain so much of its consolatory support, as to leave the human nature fully sensible of all its sufferings, so that the consolations might not take off any part of the keen edge of His passion; and this was necessary to make His sufferings meritorious. And it is probable that this is all that is intended by our Lord’s quotation from the 22nd Psalm. Taken in this view, the words convey an unexceptionable sense, even in the common translation."<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
     
  6. John Wells

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    qwerty,

    Well now. With your attitude about "made up stories," maybe your questions will always be questions! ;) R.C. Sproul's statement is laced with theological accuracy. And you answered the second question yourself. God's back was no longer turned agaist Jesus when He gave up His spirit. Jesus also said, "It is finished." That was when the sins of the world were paid for and logically when God removed His curse on His Son.
     
  7. qwerty

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    For those who want a scriptural basis for what they believe about the situation when Jesus was on the cross, and said, "My God, My God, why have you forsaken me", read Psalm 22. It is in verses 23 and 24 that we are told to praise God, specifically because He did not hide his face from Jesus, but listened him.

    22:23
    You who fear the LORD, praise Him; All you descendants of Jacob, glorify Him, And stand in awe of Him, all you descendants of Israel.

    22:24
    For He has not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; Nor has He hidden His face from him; But when he cried to Him for help, He heard.
     
  8. qwerty

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    I do have one further question:

    How can anyone say with assurance what was posted in an earlier post;

    God, at that moment in space and time, turned his back on his Son.

    Where in scripture can I go to validate this?
     
  9. Joey M

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Where in scripture can I go to validate this? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Habakkuk 1:12
    12Art thou not from everlasting, O LORD my God, mine Holy One? we shall not die. O LORD, thou hast ordained them for judgment; and, O mighty God, thou hast established them for correction. 13Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look on iniquity:
     
  10. Chris Temple

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by qwerty:
    I do have one further question:

    How can anyone say with assurance what was posted in an earlier post;

    God, at that moment in space and time, turned his back on his Son.

    Where in scripture can I go to validate this?
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


    Seems pretty clear: Psalm 22:1, which Jesus quoted in Mark 15:34: "And at the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, "Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?" which is translated, "My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?"

    BTW, all of Psalm 22 is not referring to Christ and the crucifixion. It is first and formost a lament of David, and shares a duality of ownership. Verses 1-12 David can claim to have experienced. But then God opens the door of prophetic redemption just a glimpse ot allow David to see the Suffering Servant, and to write of things he never experienced:

    14 I am poured out like water, And all My bones are out of joint; My heart is like wax; It has melted within Me.
    15 My strength is dried up like a potsherd, And My tongue clings to My jaws; You have brought Me to the dust of death.
    16 For dogs have surrounded Me; The congregation of the wicked has enclosed Me. They pierced My hands and My feet;
    17 I can count all My bones. They look and stare at Me.
    18 They divide My garments among them, And for My clothing they cast lots.

    These things David did not have happen to him! This prophecies fo the Savior alone.

    Verses 19 through the end returns to the plight of David, and his redemption and that of the people. This last portion is not messianic, so it is no argument aganist the forsakedness of Christ on the cross.
     
  11. Joey M

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    2 Cor. 5:21 tells us that Christ was made to be sin for us. Romans 6:23 says the the wages of sin is death. That is spiritual death. I know some would say this is talking about physical death, but if you look back to Genisis you see that God said in the day that ye eat of the fruit, ye shall surely die. Did they die that day? Not physicaly, but they did spiritualy. What is spiritual death? it is seperation from God. The son was seperated from God on the cross because He had to pay the penalty for our sin, which again is separation from God. And the Father then raised Him up.(see Isa. 45:13; Acts 13:30,34; Romans 10:9; Gal. 1:1 ;)

    When Christ prayed in the garden for the cup to be passed from Him, it was not the cup of physical death, because He was never afraid of this because He knew He was life and could lay it down and pick it up. He was praying that because He knew that in order to pay the penalty for our sin that He would have to be forsaken by the Father.
     
  12. qwerty

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    When anybody pulls out the Habakkuk verse ( 1:12), I always want to know if that person has ever studied the book of Habakkuk. These verses don’t have any correlation to Jesus being forsaken. Somebody needed some scriptural validation for their view that Jesus was forsaken, and pulled any rabbit out that they could.

    Habakkuk is a great book, for sure. It is a story of a man going through a journey, from confusion (chapter 1), to understanding (chapter 3). To try to create doctrine from a man’s confused musings (chapter 1) only creates more confusion. It only takes reading a little more of the context to prove this point. Contextual study is the great killer of bad doctrine. Here is the context.

    HAB 1:12 O LORD, are you not from everlasting?
    My God, my Holy One, we will not die.
    O LORD, you have appointed them to execute judgment;
    O Rock, you have ordained them to punish.

    HAB 1:13 Your eyes are too pure to look on evil;
    you cannot tolerate wrong.
    Why then do you tolerate the treacherous?
    Why are you silent while the wicked
    swallow up those more righteous than themselves?

    Verse 13 states that God cannot look on evil, or tolerate wrong. But then, if we continue in the context, Habakkuk then wonders why God tolerates the treacherous, and is silent while the wicked do their wicked deeds? I guess, if we go with the interpretation that has been given, God can’t see any evil being done on the earth. That could lead to some very interesting doctrine. Can He only see selective evil? Let’s turn on the old doctrine-a-matic and see what we can come up with.

    Fortunately, the scriptures not only disprove this bad interpretation, they obliterate it.
    Here are a few scriptures that give the truth about this.

    Gen 6:5 The LORD saw how great man's wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time.

    PR 15:3 The eyes of the LORD are everywhere, keeping watch on the wicked and the good.

    PS 33:13 From heaven the LORD looks down and sees all mankind; from his dwelling place he watches all who live on earth--

    PS 14:2-3 The LORD looks down from heaven on the sons of men to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God. All have turned aside, they have together become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one.

    PS 53:1-3 The fool says in his heart, "There is no God." They are corrupt, and their ways are vile; there is no one who does good. God looks down from heaven on the sons of men to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God. Everyone has turned away, they have together become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one.
     
  13. Joey M

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    I did not take scripture out of context to come up with some new doctrine. The verse implies that God can not tolerate sin. And that is not out of context, and is the very reason that the Father had to forsake the son. There is a penalty for sin and the Son of God had to pay that penalty.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> Somebody needed some scriptural validation for their view that Jesus was forsaken, and pulled any rabbit out that they could.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I needed no scripture to prove this point, I never needed a single verse to prove this point. All of scripture is quite clear on the penalty for sin and sin causes seperation from God. So in order for Christ to pay that penalty, He had to suffer the consequences of becoming sin for us.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Let’s turn on the old doctrine-a-matic and see what we can come up with. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    For some one asking the questions, you sure have a bad attitude when somone trys to help you out on an answer. If you didn't want a response, why ask?


    God speed.
     
  14. qwerty

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    You stopped a little short in your reply. Can you show how your explanation of Habakkuk 1:12 harmonizes with the other scriptures that I listed?
     
  15. qwerty

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    And yes, I do have a bad attitude.... towards bad doctrine.
     
  16. Joey M

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> And yes, I do have a bad attitude.... towards bad doctrine. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Will you please show me where there is bad doctrine in that Jesus was forsaken by the Father because of the sin that He bore.
     
  17. qwerty

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    I doubt I can show you any more that I already have. The "Jesus forsaken" doctrine is supported dubiously by Habakkuk 1:12, which I think I have shown by other scriptures to not be an accurate interpretation.

    And I have shown that Psalm 22 expressly says to praise God because He did not turn His face from Jesus.

    If you feel that the whole of Psalm 22 is not Messianic, then you will probably need to argue your point with people whom you consider to be more credible than myself. In my studies on Psalm 22, I have not found one commentary or study that says that parts are Messianic, and parts are not.

    So, I am at a loss to try to know what else to communicate, other than what I have already. If you want to pin desertion on the Heavenly Father, no matter what you want to call it, I would advise that you talk to Him (the Heavenly Father) about it. He (the Heavenly Father) has made it very clear that He did not desert Jesus or turn His back on Jesus while Jesus was on the cross. But I don't know if you will want to take that route. Talking to the Heavenly Father about this issue might be risky. Especially if He didn't turn away from Jesus. (and He didn't).

    This is why the question of how Jesus died is so important. Was it suicide? Was it murder? Did the crucifixion kill him?

    Or was Jesus sacrificed for our sins, being the Lamb of God, slain from the foundation of the world? If Jesus was sacrificed for our sins as the Lamb of God, Who was the High Priest holding the knife? The lamb does not kill itself.

    There is a story you are probably familiar with. It is the story of Abraham and Isaac. Abraham obeyed the voice of God to sacrifice his son Isaac. And you may not be aware that the location where Abraham was to sacrifice his son Isaac is the same location where Jesus was offered (crucified) as the unblemished Lamb of God. Isaac was spared, because of Abraham's obedience. But Jesus could not be spared, because His offering of Himself as the Lamb of God was for the sins of the world.

    Abraham and Isaac. The Heavenly Father and Jesus. Abraham was allowed to spare his son Isaac. The Heavenly Father could not spare His Son, Jesus.

    The Heavenly Father could not have turned His back on Jesus because He was the One Who was offering Jesus, the Lamb of God, as a sacrifice for our sins. That is why we are to praise Him according to Psalm 22.

    There are other scriptures that say things like "God was IN CHRIST reconciling the world to Himself."

    I doubt if this will convince you. But I know the Heavenly Father is not pleased when people say that He turned away from Jesus while Jesus was on the cross.
     
  18. John Wells

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    Got a question? Since one thing we know for certain is that Jesus said, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?”, we must ask an important question:

    Was Jesus wrong? Did Jesus misinterpret, or "mis-feel" His connection with the Father?

    If the answer is yes, Jesus was wrong, then Jesus was not perfect and those who place their trust in His atonement are all in trouble! :eek:

    Jesus was not wrong. God did forsake Him! It's ludicrous to propose Jesus would say something that isn't true. Now as for "turning one's back" or "face," we're talking semantics here. Bottom line is God forsook Jesus for at least a brief moment on the cross and Jesus sensed/felt it. That caused Him more pain than all the nails, whips, thorns, and insults put together! ;)
     
  19. Joey M

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    Amen John.

    I never said nor do I believe that the Father totaly forsook Jesus, but He did have to forsake Him while He beared the cross.

    If this is not what happened could you please explain why Jesus said "My God, My God why hast thou forsaken me?"

    I give praise to God for all that He does. I give praise to Him that He spared not His only begotten Son.

    You mentioned Abraham and Issac, and yes I am aware that Mt. Calvary and the place where Abraham offered Issac are the same.
    But Abraham in order to slay and offer his son, would have to forsake him in order that he might sacrifice him. The angel stopped Abraham, but God when He offered His Son did not stop and He forsook His Son so that we might live. PRAISE GOD FOR THAT. Praise God that Jesus was willing. "Know ye not that I could presently call ten legions of angels..." He went willingly just as I believe Issac didn't struggle, but God did and had to forske Him in order to sacrifice Him.
    And I don't use Hab. for my support of that, as I said earlier, the whole NT supports that.

    God speed.
     
  20. qwerty

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    Jesus may have felt forsaken, but the Father did not forsake or turn away from Jesus.

    If you take the time to read Psalm 22, you will find this is exactly what it says.

    When Jesus said "My God, My God, why have you forsaken me", Jesus was quoting from the first verse of Psalm 22. Psalm 22 is now known as a Messianic psalm. If you will read it in the light of the cross, you will find it correlates exactly.

    Yes, Jesus did feel forsaken. Psalm 22 specifically says that God (the Father) did not turn His face from Jesus. Feeling forsaken is not the same as being forsaken. That is what Psalm 22 is about. And Jesus, in my opinion, quoted the first verse, to let those who knew understand that He was at that moment fulfilling all of Psalm 22. You may differ on that point.

    But you cannot show me any scripture that says that the Father turned away from Jesus. If you can, I will definitely consider it. You can show me your interpretation of "My God, My God, why have you forsaken me." Your interpretation just doesn't take into account all of the facts.

    Unfortunately, this interpretational teaching is like other teachings in the Body of Christ. It is a very superficial teaching that must be justified by pulling verses out of context.

    I can tell you without qualification, the Heavenly Father did not turn away from Jesus while Jesus was on the cross.

    You may believe now that the Father did turn away, but I know for certain you will change your mind in heaven. And you will then praise the Father, just as it says in Psalm 22, that He did not turn His face away.
     

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