"AND WHEN THEY WERE COME TO THE PLACE, WHICH IS CALLED CALVARY, THERE THEY CRUCIFIED HIM" (LUKE 23:33)
The death of the Lord Jesus is a fact of history. Its meaning is entirely a matter of divine revelation. There
is no other means of interpreting our Lord's death but "according to the scriptures" that "Christ died for
our sins" (1 Cor. 15: 3,4). His death was a most cruel and ignominious death. Crucifixion was a Roman
and Gentile form of death. The Jews stoned to death their own condemned criminals. In crying for and
demanding that the Lord Jesus be crucified, the Jews therefore were not only inflicting upon our Lord a
most inhuman form of suffering, but were showing their contempt of Him, by assigning Him a Roman
death, as though He was unworthy to be identified with national Israel even in death.
The Jews who did this infamous act were part of the Hebrew race, whom God took up in ancient times
for sovereign and divine purposes. The nation itself was a representative part of our total humanity. As
such they were given privileges, which no other people were given, and elevated to be the chiefest of the
nations, being specially educated in the knowledge of God. Paul says of them in Rom. 9:4-5, "...to whom
pertaineth the adoption, and the glory... the service of God, and the promises... of whom as concerning
the flesh Christ came... God blessed for ever".
Jesus lived among them, and did the most stupendous miracles, performing by a touch, or a word, often
without a word, and sometimes at a great distance. They were all-benevolent in their nature and brought
the greatest blessings to the people of that nation. Yet "they crucified him". If Jewry did this, what shall
we say, would any other part of the human race have done?
In the act of crucifying our Lord, there were gathered around the cross every type of our humanity. The
corrupt humanity of the whole of mankind was expressed in this, even by the most e9ucated, civilized
and religious part of it. "And they crucified him"- that points the finger to all mankind.
The hatred of the rulers and priests of Jewry, with their cunning and craft, enmity and cruelty, exposed
their heart of unbelief, though under a religious guise or garment. Pilate is representative of the Gentiles
and the Gentile dominion, the fourth great world -power of Rome, which had subdued the Jews and
usurped the rule of their land. He was the Roman Governor, an able man of his day. Because of his
detestation for the Jews, he might have taken sides with Jesus. He sought to proclaim the innocence of
Jesus, "Behold.. I find no fault in him" (John 19:4,5). Pilate recognized something of the superior quality
of life in Christ, when he cried to the Jews, "Behold the man!", as though he was acknowledging," Here is
an ideal man, a kind of man that all men should have been."
Now all this high praise of Pilate's, suddenly came crashing down when the Jews cried, " If thou let this
man go, thou art not Caesar's friend" (John 19:12). That cry created anew issue; Christ or self
interest-Christ or position-Christ or reputation. And Pilate loved self more than he loved God, if he ever
thought of God at all. This is the real malignity of sin. It esteems self to be of more value than the Son of
God. So it was that Pilate, to save his own skin, delivered up Jesus to be crucified. Pilate either had to
deny self or deny Christ; crucify the flesh or crucify Christ. He did what all Gentiles do- and did as the
representative of all Gentiles.
If the cross thus reveals the true character and extent of man's iniquity and unbelief, it reveals as nowhere
else the true character and extent of God's love for man. Here and only by this means, man's redemption
is secured and here and in no other place, can sinful man fall into the loving arms of His God and be
forgiven. It is the love of God in action; love which many waters cannot quench nor floods drown. It is
love from which comes all our salvation. The cross is God's witness that He is not willing that any should
perish but that all should come to repentance (2 Pet. 3:9).
There is only one other kind of people to be found in the Scripture. It is a company of people who have
come forth from both these groups - Jew and Gentile, because they have seen by the Spirit of God, the
evil of their natural heart and the immensity of unbelief, which lurks in every corner of that heart. They
have knelt at the Saviour's feet. They have received Him, Whom both the Jew and Gentile had rejected.
They are neither Jew nor Gentile now, but a new creation people through faith in Him, Who in being
crucified by men, wrought out God's plan for their salvation. "For there is no difference between the Jew
and the Greek (Gentile): for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever
shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved" (Rom. 10:12:13).
Dear reader, if you have not experienced this salvation, through faith in the crucified, risen One, "... call
ye upon him while he is near;" and be forgiven -saved from the wrath to come (Isa. 55:6,7).
THE GREAT MOUNTAIN -2
The great King Nebuchadnezzar had seen a huge image, with head of gold, breast and arms of silver,
belly and thighs of brass, legs of iron and feet part of iron and part of clay. Then he saw a stone" cut out
without hands" which smote the image upon the feet, and broke the whole image into pieces. It became
like chaff or dry straw, which the wind carried away. Then the stone began to increase and went on
increasing till it became a great mountain, which filled the whole earth. Through this dream the Lord
showed the proud king, things, which were to happen in future. He prophesied how there will be four
great kingdoms of the world, sub-divided at the end into kingdoms, and how in the end all will be
completely broken into pieces and the Kingdom of the Living God will cover the whole universe. Now
the rock or stone without hands speaks of the Virgin birth of the Lord Jesus Christ, Who was conceived
by the Holy Ghost and not by the will of flesh. One day His Kingdom will be established throughout the
Each one of us needs to be filled with the Lord Jesus Christ.. for that Rock was Christ. Before that Rock
could become the great mountain, which filled all the earth, it had to break the gold, silver, brass and clay
into pieces like chaff, which was carried away. It we look at ourselves as God sees us, we will see that
right inside our heart also there is hidden a huge image. So far you might not have realised this, but by
the light of the Word of God you can see those things, which have been brought by Satan into your
What can we learn from the gold, silver, brass, iron and clay as applied to this image in the heart? You
will find that each thing has a double meaning. Firstly, as summed up in the story of king
Nebuchadnezzar, he himself is compared to the head of gold. The king had become a mighty and great
world -conqueror of that time. If you study world history you will see how advanced the kingdom of
Babylon was in those days. In a short time it spread far and wide, covering many great cities, and
amassed much wealth. So in a symbolic way, gold speaks of man's glory and prosperity. As for ourselves
does not each one of us have the desire to prosper in the world and become great? Some of us may have
the ambition to become very wealthy. Others may have the ambition to own much land and other
property. Others again have the ambition to have a great name as a writer or poet or an inventor. Such is
man's glory! Do you not have pride or ambition concerning any of these things, -either hidden or
manifest? Surely in every heart is the longing and ambition to be great, prosperous and wealthy, and with
that ambition they go on working day and night to amass money or gain a great name.
Secondly, silver speaks of the desire to multiply the income. If you are in a business, you want to increase
profits, and if you are in Government service, you want promotion and higher income. Some, if they
cannot get the income in the right way, will give or receive bribes in order to get it. Then other devices
are planned in order to multiply the income by selling and buying things. Others again try to get money
even from their own children. Some parents do not even allow their children to get married because they
want their money. In some parts of South India, young men actually bargain before getting engaged for
marriage. (To be contd.)