John 19 spans from Jesus' flogging through to His burial. While it was indeed the greatest tragedy for those who loved Jesus Christ and truly believed, what we are reading is also the capstone of God’s marvelous work in the redemption of humankind. See the humility and power of God! Notice the many contemptuous actions and words that came from the most religious and pious Jews and from the Roman soldiers. Jesus' kingship was mocked, yet not threatened. Nothing could overcome the love and power of Jesus. We see Jesus so surrendered to the Father’s will, so understanding His controlling hand in all these circumstances, that He did not demand his dignity when beaten and mocked, and he did not argue his case when Pilot asked, “Where are you from?” (v. 8).
See the amazing surrender of Jesus Christ as whips made of leather, metal, and bone tore through his flesh, and as the weight of sin, and God’s just wrath toward it, all fell upon Him. Centuries before, Isaiah had written, "I offered my back to those who beat me, my cheeks to those who pulled out my beard; I did not hide my face from mocking and spitting" (Isa. 50:6). Isaiah prophesied of Jesus again, "Just as there were many who were appalled at him... his appearance was so disfigured beyond that of any man and his form marred beyond human likeness..." (Isa. 52:14).
Jesus sums this up with one majestic statement in the midst of this hour of depravity: "You would have no authority over me at all unless it had been given you from above” (John 19:11).
When Pilate sat at the judgement seat, the Jews were demanding crucifixion. It was the day of preparation for the Passover lamb. Lambs all over town would be killed and the blood would be placed over the doors to each of the Jews’ homes. What the Jews didn't realize was that they were fulfilling scripture by physically preparing Jesus for sacrifice. He was the perfect Lamb of God. They were happy with comfortable substitutes, instead of accepting the message of the true Lamb. But God, who told them centuries before to kill a lamb and be saved by its blood, knew all along that they would kill the spotless Lamb of God, whose blood alone can save.
Sometimes there are biblical concepts and rituals that are God ordained, but the whole end point is missed. We hold so tightly to what we know that we couldn't dare let God interrupt us.
Sometimes, like Jesus, we must walk through physical and emotional pain that threatens to break us. Jesus, who has suffered before us, models perfect surrender to the will of the Father, so that we can have the same confidence, the same trust, and the same victory.
As the whole world was darkened for several hours, the Father's Presence stopped flowing toward His Son. If it weren't for this day of darkness and separation from the Father, you and I would have no connection to God. The terrible suffering of Jesus is rooted in separation from his Father. This pain of shame, separation and sin was far more great than physical pain. Jesus became sin for us. He gave up unity so we could have unity.
Take time to journal what the Holy Spirit has ministered to you in the suffering of your Savior.