The gospel, which means “good news,” is the ultimate story of an innocent man taking the place of the guilty. It is the story of a man who never sinned, taking the punishment of sinful men and women. Mark 15:33-39 tells the story of Jesus’ death. As an innocent man dying for the guilty, Jesus proved himself to be the Messiah, the Son of God, sent from God to bear God’s wrath against sin and sinners. He also proved himself to be the Savior who brings sinners back to God. There are two images we see in this chapter that show Jesus as our sacrificial Lamb and our great Mediator.
First, look at Mark 15:34. Mark writes, “And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice…”My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” This means so much for you and me. Jesus was about to die. With the last bit of strength he had in his dying body, he shouted loudly that God had “forsaken” him. This means that God had abandoned him. In this moment, the wrath of God was pouring out on Jesus. It was like God the Father turned his back on God the Son.
For the first time in eternity, forsakenness existed within the Trinity because as Jesus took his final breaths, the weight of human sin was on his shoulders—your sin and my sin. Jesus took our sin upon himself (2 Cor. 5:21). He was forsaken or abandoned by God so that all who believe in him will never be forsaken or abandoned by God.
Second, look at Mark 15:37-38. Mark writes, “And Jesus uttered a loud cry and breathed his last. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom.” John tells us that loud cry was, “It is finished” (John 19:30). As Jesus breathed his last breath on a hill outside the city of Jerusalem, a curtain in the temple in Jerusalem tore in two pieces.
This curtain separated the Holy Place from the Most Holy Place in the temple. It was in the Most Holy Place that the presence of God dwelled, and where the high priest would go to make sacrifices for the people. When Jesus died, he offered himself to God as the once for all perfect sacrifice for sin. Through his death, the veil separating the people from the presence of God was forever torn.
Jesus was forsaken or abandoned by God so that all who believe in him will never be forsaken or abandoned by God.
Based on Mark 15:33-39, write out the gospel in your own words in one sentence.
Thank God for his saving grace by sending Jesus to die for the ungodly.