Did Jesus Really Die On The Cross?

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Satan’s intentional and ceaseless attacks to pervert the truth are not unprecedented. We come across his attacks on truth throughout the Bible. We find how he deceived Eve in the garden of Eden (Gen. 3:1-6) and will deceive the nations even before his eternal, dreadful doom (Rev. 20:7-8). This is who he has been from the beginning – a liar, as our Lord Jesus called him (Jn. 8:44). The ruling principle of Satan’s lies to distort the truth is always the same – “Did God really say?”

In the fullness of time, the long-awaited Messiah Jesus came! He lived a sinless life even to the point of death.

Unsurprisingly, one of the truths which Satan has been trying to distort is the very heart of the Christian gospel – Jesus’ physical death on the cross. The historicity of Jesus’ death has been denied by proponents of different theories. For example, the Swoon Theory was first proposed by a German theologian and Bible critic, H.E.G. Paulus in 1828. This theory claims that Jesus only fainted on the cross and that his resurrection was a resuscitation. Others claim that Jesus was replaced by a substitute at the time of his death. Whatever theories may be proposed, we can be certain that Jesus really did die on the cross because this is the clear teaching of the Bible.

Biblical Evidence Proving Jesus’ Death
Throughout the Bible, we see that these claims are void. In Genesis 3:15, we find the promise of the Seed of the woman who will crush the seed of the serpent. From there, we see the anticipation of Jesus’ death by the Old Testament saints. Old Testament saints looked forward to this day of the sacrificial, wrath-appeasing death of the Anointed One as he sprinkled His blood on the mercy seat for the atonement of God’s people from their sin (Ps. 22; Is. 53). Jesus’ death was not an accident of history, but an event prophesied by God through the prophets of the Old Testament.

If Jesus had not died, our claim for forgiveness is but a noisy gong and empty words.

In the fullness of time, the long-awaited Messiah Jesus came! He lived a sinless life even to the point of death. Before His crucifixion, Jesus foretold His death on various occasions (Mk. 8:31, 9:31, 10:33-35). Jesus’ death on the Cross was not only the fulfilment of the Old Testament prophecies, but also He was obedient to His Father. We find Jesus intentionally showing this to us by His words and by His deeds (Matt. 16:23; Jn. 4:34, 18:11). Jesus did not lie when He explicitly foretold that He would be “killed.”

When Jesus was crucified, it was not a hidden, witness-lacking event. His death was a witness-filled death (Matt. 27:41, 54; Lk. 23:27, 49; Jn. 19:25-27). The Lamb of God took away the sins of the world by dying the propitiating death on the cross for His people and on their behalf. He was lifted up on high, as Moses lifted up the bronze serpent, so that the beholder may be saved.

After Jesus’ ascension, His apostles preached the necessary death of our Lord for salvation when they preached the gospel. In Acts 2, Peter preached that Jesus was crucified and put to death by the Jews according to the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God (Acts 2: 23). Before his death, Stephen preached how the Jews had become the betrayers and murderers of the Just One (Acts 7:52). Moreover, the message of the death of Christ for the redemption of God’s people is prominent in the Epistles of the New Testament (Rom. 5:6; 1 Cor. 11:26; 2 Cor. 5:15; Gal. 2:21; Eph. 5:25; Phil. 2: 8; Col. 1: 22; 1 Thes. 4:14; 1 Tim. 2:5, 6; 2 Tim. 2:8; Tit. 2:13, 14; Heb. 2:9; 1 Pet. 1:3; 1 Jn. 2:2). In Revelation, we find that Jesus’s death for the redemption of His people is praised by the heavenly assembly (Rev. 5:9).

Jesus’ death was promised by God the Father, prophesied by the prophets, witnessed by the people of His time, proclaimed by the Apostles, and we all will join one day to praise Him in glory.

The death of the Lord is fundamental to Christians. He died the death of a man. Christianity is empty without this truth. In fact, if Jesus had not died, our claim for forgiveness is but a noisy gong and empty words. But praise God that Jesus died and He died to save us from the slavery and wages of sin. His death was promised by God the Father, prophesied by the prophets, witnessed by the people of His time, proclaimed by the Apostles, and we all will join one day to praise Him in glory. This is the truth. Truth with the glorious hope of salvation and eternal life.

We need not fear or shy away from giving this right response to every lie which attacks the truthful claim of our Savior’s death. Our standard is the inspired word of God (2 Tim. 3:16). The authority of the truthfulness of the Word is not the men who wrote it, but God who authored it (2 Pet. 1:21). We are to pull down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God to the obedience of Christ (2 Cor. 10:4-6). In the power of the Spirit of God and in meekness, we proclaim the hope-filled truth of Jesus (1 Pet. 3:15). He died for the sins of people and they may be saved by putting their trust in Him.

Dear friends, let us unashamedly preach Christ and Him crucified!


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