Crying Out in the Dark

Read: Mark 15:33-37

At the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice. (v. 34)

It was a dark day, the day we call Good Friday. As Jesus hung on the cross and darkness descended over Jerusalem for three hours, it was almost as if nature itself was in mourning for what was taking place. In the middle of this darkness, Mark tells us that Jesus cries aloud two times.

His first cry contained the words, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” This seems strange. Jesus had always had a very close relationship to his Father. But now on the cross he feels abandoned by God. How could this be?

Although divine, Jesus had experienced everything human, except sin (Hebrews 4:15). But in order to be our complete Savior, Jesus in some sense had to “experience” sin; and sin always separates us from God. So, on the cross, as Paul says in 2 Corinthians 5:21, “For our sake he [God] made him [Christ] to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” As extreme as this may sound, it assures us of salvation.

As frightening as the first cry might have been, the second cry (Mark 15:37) was one of triumph. Each gospel records these cries slightly differently, but John tells us that Jesus says—“It is finished” (John 19:30). Yes, it was finished—Jesus had conquered sin and our salvation was assured. —John Koedyker

As you pray, thank the Lord Jesus for completely saving us from our sins.

About the Author

Rev. John Koedyker has been a pastor in the Reformed Church in America for more than forty years. His ministry began in Japan where he served as a missionary for ten years. After that he has served churches in Iowa and Michigan. He has served as the Stated Clerk of Muskegon Classis, RCA, for the past sixteen years and also presently serves as pastor of congregational care at First Reformed Church of Grand Haven, Michigan. John has written a number of times previously for Words of Hope and he has a bi-monthly religion column in the Grand Haven Tribune. He is married to Marilyn, and they have four grown children and seven grandchildren.

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