Have you paused to consider?
by Ken Pullen
Thursday, April 9th, 2020
ACP — A Crooked Path
(Good Friday service & Easter Sunday live streaming information at the end of this article)
Have you paused during the barrage of almost nothing but virus news to consider that God knows all, provides all and this time, this opportunity has been given by God our Father for much deeper living in the Word, getting to know the Word, APPLYING the Word?
Yesterday, April 8th at sundown Passover, or Pesach began. Tomorrow, April 10th is Good Friday. And Sunday, April 12th is Easter.
Have you paused to consider what the world is experiencing, all of the world is being given opportunity right now to grow closer to God. To Jesus. To the Holy Spirit. To the living, active infallible and inerrant Word of God?
Passover begins on day 15 of the month of Nissan. According to the vernal equinox.
Jesus observed Passover every year of His life on earth in the flesh, and He will partake of it again in heaven after His return and all those in the Book of Life are renewed in body and name and are with Him in heaven.
And at the last Passover Jesus observed on earth the first Lord’s Supper occurred.
None of the following ought to be read or considered, deeply thought upon only once a year. All of the following ought to be read and considered and bowed thankfully in prayer unto the Lord each week the Lord blessed each of us with life.
And to those who believe? Are faithful and do not fall away? Not only believe but obey and make Jesus the Lord of their life?
Have you paused to consider, and what do you hold within your heart, mind, soul, spirit and body?
I think on the following many times a week. Often daily. Jesus Christ the Lord was beaten so badly prior to being nailed to a cross He was unrecognizable as a man, as a human being, which He was. Jesus was all God and also all human man.
And due to my sins? The sins of everyone? He was spat upon, tried in an illegal court. Spotless, blameless, sinless and He was mocked, humiliated, beaten beyond being recognized then nailed to a tree. Pierced to shed His precious sinless blood as the Sacrificial Lamb of God. To take on the sins of every person who believes upon Him and makes Him Lord of their life. He endured that, died that way, to be resurrected fulfilling the promise of God and all Bible prophecy concerning Him.
I think on the following if not each day, at least 3, 4 times each week;
The Servant’s Suffering and Exaltation
See, my servant will be successful;
he will be raised and lifted up and greatly exalted.
Just as many were appalled at you —
his appearance was so disfigured
that he did not look like a man,
and his form did not resemble a human being —
so he will sprinkle many nations.
Kings will shut their mouths because of him,
for they will see what had not been told them,
and they will understand what they had not heard.
Isaiah 52:13-15 — Christian Standard Bible
Think on these things. Pray on these things. Believe on these things;
Betrayal at the Passover
On the first day of Unleavened Bread the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Where do you want us to make preparations for you to eat the Passover? ”
“Go into the city to a certain man,” he said, “and tell him, ‘The Teacher says: My time is near; I am celebrating the Passover at your place with my disciples.’ ” So the disciples did as Jesus had directed them and prepared the Passover. When evening came, he was reclining at the table with the Twelve. While they were eating, he said, “Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me.”
Deeply distressed, each one began to say to him, “Surely not I, Lord? ”
He replied, “The one who dipped his hand with me in the bowl — he will betray me. The Son of Man will go just as it is written about him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been better for him if he had not been born.”
Judas, his betrayer, replied, “Surely not I, Rabbi? ”
“You have said it,” he told him.
The First Lord’s Supper
As they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take and eat it; this is my body.” Then he took a cup, and after giving thanks, he gave it to them and said, “Drink from it, all of you. For this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. But I tell you, I will not drink from this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.” After singing a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.
Matthew 26:17-30 — Christian Standard Bible
Passover was ordained by God. Passover is eternal;
And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the LORD throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever.
Exodus 12:14 — King James Version
And this day shall be for a memorial to you: and you shall keep it a feast to the Lord in your generations with an everlasting observance.
Exodus 12:14 — Douay-Rheims Bible
Jesus is the Son of God.
This week if no other week, in this time at hand as it has been given let each of us treasure the time, the blessing of bowing before the Lord and coming nearer to Him. Increasing in faith thereby in strength to endure, to grow in understanding and love with Him, for Him, through Him to all we know or will come to know. Let us take this opportunity that has been given such as never before in anyone’s lifetime presently alive to truly dwell in the house of the Lord — deep in His Word, deep in our soul, deep in our heart, deep in our mind, deep in our body, deep in our spirit.
Ponder what the times of this week mean, truly mean, and ponder what the times each of us is living in now mean, and ponder Who it is that by His will supplies your present breath in the hope of the next one, your present heartbeat in the hope of the next one, while we all desire to be with the Lord in Paradise one day.
Think upon what took place during the Lord’s last Passover, what the Lord’s Supper means, what Good Friday means, and what and why a time called Easter exists.
NOT for colored eggs, candy, or anything to do with all the pagan symbols of a fertile rabbit, the eggs and such which people may proclaim they do not know, they are innocent, but none are innocent and ignorance does not get one off when the truth is so clear, so plain, so readily available to one and all.
Peter’s Denial Predicted
Then Jesus said to them, “Tonight all of you will fall away because of me, for it is written:
and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.
But after I have risen, I will go ahead of you to Galilee.”
Peter told him, “Even if everyone falls away because of you, I will never fall away.”
“Truly I tell you,” Jesus said to him, “tonight, before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times.”
“Even if I have to die with you,” Peter told him, “I will never deny you,” and all the disciples said the same thing.
The Prayer in the Garden
Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane, and he told the disciples, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” Taking along Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful and troubled. He said to them, “I am deeply grieved to the point of death. Remain here and stay awake with me.” Going a little farther, he fell facedown and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.”
Then he came to the disciples and found them sleeping. He asked Peter, “So, couldn’t you stay awake with me one hour? Stay awake and pray, so that you won’t enter into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
Again, a second time, he went away and prayed, “My Father, if this cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done.” And he came again and found them sleeping, because they could not keep their eyes open.
After leaving them, he went away again and prayed a third time, saying the same thing once more. Then he came to the disciples and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and resting? See, the time is near. The Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Get up; let’s go. See, my betrayer is near.”
Judas’s Betrayal of Jesus
While he was still speaking, Judas, one of the Twelve, suddenly arrived. A large mob with swords and clubs was with him from the chief priests and elders of the people. His betrayer had given them a sign: “The one I kiss, he’s the one; arrest him.” So immediately he went up to Jesus and said, “Greetings, Rabbi! ” and kissed him.
“Friend,” Jesus asked him, “why have you come? ”
Then they came up, took hold of Jesus, and arrested him. At that moment one of those with Jesus reached out his hand and drew his sword. He struck the high priest’s servant and cut off his ear.
Then Jesus told him, “Put your sword back in its place because all who take up the sword will perish by the sword. Or do you think that I cannot call on my Father, and he will provide me here and now with more than twelve legions of angels? How, then, would the Scriptures be fulfilled† that say it must happen this way? ”
At that time Jesus said to the crowds, “Have you come out with swords and clubs, as if I were a criminal, to capture me? Every day I used to sit, teaching in the temple, and you didn’t arrest me. But all this has happened so that the writings of the prophets would be fulfilled.” Then all the disciples deserted him and ran away.
Jesus Faces the Sanhedrin
Those who had arrested Jesus led him away to Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and the elders had convened. Peter was following him at a distance right to the high priest’s courtyard. He went in and was sitting with the servants to see the outcome.
The chief priests and the whole Sanhedrin were looking for false testimony against Jesus so that they could put him to death, but they could not find any, even though many false witnesses came forward. Finally, two who came forward stated, “This man said, ‘I can destroy the temple of God and rebuild it in three days.’ ”
The high priest stood up and said to him, “Don’t you have an answer to what these men are testifying against you? ”But Jesus kept silent. The high priest said to him, “I charge you under oath by the living God: Tell us if you are the Messiah, the Son of God.”
“You have said it,” Jesus told him. “But I tell you, in the future you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power and coming on the clouds of heaven.”
Then the high priest tore his robes and said, “He has blasphemed! Why do we still need witnesses? See, now you’ve heard the blasphemy. What is your decision? ”
They answered, “He deserves death! ” Then they spat in his face and beat him; others slapped him and said, “Prophesy to us, Messiah! Who was it that hit you? ”
Peter Denies His Lord
Now Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard. A servant girl approached him and said, “You were with Jesus the Galilean too.”
But he denied it in front of everyone: “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
When he had gone out to the gateway, another woman saw him and told those who were there, “This man was with Jesus the Nazarene! ”
And again he denied it with an oath: “I don’t know the man! ”
After a little while those standing there approached and said to Peter, “You really are one of them, since even your accent gives you away.”
Then he started to curse and to swear with an oath, “I don’t know the man! ” Immediately a rooster crowed, and Peter remembered the words Jesus had spoken, “Before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times.” And he went outside and wept bitterly.
Jesus Handed Over to Pilate
When daybreak came, all the chief priests and the elders of the people plotted against Jesus to put him to death. After tying him up, they led him away and handed him over to Pilate, the governor.
Judas Hangs Himself
Then Judas, his betrayer, seeing that Jesus had been condemned, was full of remorse and returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders. “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood,” he said.
“What’s that to us? ” they said. “See to it yourself! ” So he threw the silver into the temple and departed. Then he went and hanged himself.
The chief priests took the silver and said, “It’s not permitted to put it into the temple treasury, since it is blood money.” They conferred together and bought the potter’s field with it as a burial place for foreigners. Therefore that field has been called “Blood Field” to this day. Then what was spoken through the prophet Jeremiah was fulfilled: They took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him whose price was set by the Israelites, and they gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord directed me.
Jesus Faces the Governor
Now Jesus stood before the governor. “Are you the King of the Jews? ” the governor asked him.
Jesus answered, “You say so.” While he was being accused by the chief priests and elders, he didn’t answer.
Then Pilate said to him, “Don’t you hear how much they are testifying against you? ” But he didn’t answer him on even one charge, so that the governor was quite amazed.
Jesus or Barabbas
At the festival the governor’s custom was to release to the crowd a prisoner they wanted. At that time they had a notorious prisoner called Barabbas. So when they had gathered together, Pilate said to them, “Who is it you want me to release for you — Barabbas, or Jesus who is called Christ? ” For he knew it was because of envy that they had handed him over.
While he was sitting on the judge’s bench, his wife sent word to him, “Have nothing to do with that righteous man, for today I’ve suffered terribly in a dream because of him.”
The chief priests and the elders, however, persuaded the crowds to ask for Barabbas and to execute Jesus. The governor asked them, “Which of the two do you want me to release for you? ”
“Barabbas! ” they answered.
Pilate asked them, “What should I do then with Jesus, who is called Christ? ”
They all answered, “Crucify him! ”
Then he said, “Why? What has he done wrong? ”
But they kept shouting all the more, “Crucify him! ”
When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that a riot was starting instead, he took some water, washed his hands in front of the crowd, and said, “I am innocent of this man’s blood. See to it yourselves! ”
All the people answered, “His blood be on us and on our children! ” Then he released Barabbas to them and, after having Jesus flogged, handed him over to be crucified.
Mocked by the Military
Then the governor’s soldiers took Jesus into the governor’s residence and gathered the whole company around him. They stripped him and dressed him in a scarlet robe. They twisted together a crown of thorns, put it on his head, and placed a staff in his right hand. And they knelt down before him and mocked him: “Hail, King of the Jews! ” Then they spat on him, took the staff, and kept hitting him on the head. After they had mocked him, they stripped him of the robe, put his own clothes on him, and led him away to crucify him.
Crucified Between Two Criminals
As they were going out, they found a Cyrenian man named Simon. They forced him to carry his cross. When they came to a place called Golgotha (which means Place of the Skull), they gave him wine mixed with gall to drink. But when he tasted it, he refused to drink it. After crucifying him, they divided his clothes by casting lots. Then they sat down and were guarding him there. Above his head they put up the charge against him in writing: This Is Jesus, the King of the Jews.
Then two criminals were crucified with him, one on the right and one on the left. Those who passed by were yelling insults at him, shaking their heads and saying, “You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself! If you are the Son of God, come down from the cross! ” In the same way the chief priests, with the scribes and elders, mocked him and said, “He saved others, but he cannot save himself! He is the King of Israel! Let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him. He trusts in God; let God rescue him now — if he takes pleasure in him! For he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’ ” In the same way even the criminals who were crucified with him taunted him.
The Death of Jesus
From noon until three in the afternoon darkness came over the whole land. About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out with a loud voice, “Elí, Elí, lemá sabachtháni ? ” that is, “My God, my God, why have you abandoned me ?”
When some of those standing there heard this, they said, “He’s calling for Elijah.”
Immediately one of them ran and got a sponge, filled it with sour wine, put it on a stick, and offered him a drink. But the rest said, “Let’s see if Elijah comes to save him.”
But Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and gave up his spirit. Suddenly, the curtain of the sanctuary was torn in two from top to bottom, the earth quaked, and the rocks were split. The tombs were also opened† and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised. And they came out of the tombs after his resurrection, entered the holy city, and appeared to many.
When the centurion and those with him, who were keeping watch over Jesus, saw the earthquake and the things that had happened, they were terrified and said, “Truly this man was the Son of God! ”
Many women who had followed Jesus from Galilee and looked after him were there, watching from a distance. Among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joseph, and the mother of Zebedee’s sons.
The Burial of Jesus
When it was evening, a rich man from Arimathea named Joseph came, who himself had also become a disciple of Jesus. He approached Pilate and asked for Jesus’s body. Then Pilate ordered that it be released. So Joseph took the body, wrapped it in clean, fine linen, and placed it in his new tomb, which he had cut into the rock. He left after rolling a great stone against the entrance of the tomb. Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were seated there, facing the tomb.
The Closely Guarded Tomb
The next day, which followed the preparation day, the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered before Pilate and said, “Sir, we remember that while this deceiver was still alive he said, ‘After three days I will rise again.’ So give orders that the tomb be made secure until the third day. Otherwise, his disciples may come, steal him, and tell the people, ‘He has been raised from the dead,’ and the last deception will be worse than the first.”
“You have a guard of soldiers,” Pilate told them. “Go and make it as secure as you know how.” They went and secured the tomb by setting a seal on the stone and placing the guard.
After the Sabbath, as the first day of the week was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to view the tomb. There was a violent earthquake, because an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and approached the tomb. He rolled back the stone and was sitting on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing was as white as snow. The guards were so shaken by fear of him that they became like dead men.
The angel told the women, “Don’t be afraid, because I know you are looking for Jesus who was crucified.† He is not here. For he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples, ‘He has risen from the dead and indeed he is going ahead of you to Galilee; you will see him there.’ Listen, I have told you.”
So, departing quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, they ran to tell his disciples the news. Just then Jesus met them and said, “Greetings! ” They came up, took hold of his feet, and worshiped him. Then Jesus told them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to leave for Galilee, and they will see me there.”
The Soldiers Bribed to Lie
As they were on their way, some of the guards came into the city and reported to the chief priests everything that had happened. After the priests had assembled with the elders and agreed on a plan, they gave the soldiers a large sum of money and told them, “Say this, ‘His disciples came during the night and stole him while we were sleeping.’ If this reaches the governor’s ears, we will deal with him and keep you out of trouble.” They took the money and did as they were instructed, and this story has been spread among Jewish people to this day.
The Great Commission
The eleven disciples traveled to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had directed them. When they saw him, they worshiped, but some doubted. Jesus came near and said to them, “All authority has been given to me in heaven and on earth. Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Matthew 26:31; Matthew 28 — Christian Standard Bible
Good Friday | April 10 @ 7pm ET
Join us for a meditation from Pastor Alistair Begg
Easter Sunday | April 12 @ 9:45am ET
Celebrate Christ Jesus’ resurrection in our Easter Sunday service with Pastor Alistair Begg, live from Parkside
Illustration above by Kathern Brown