What is the meaning of the crucifixion?
With the crucifixion of Jesus, men rejected the Son of God as their expected Messiah and the separation between man and God became all the greater.
The death of the Son of God through the crucifixion has been accepted by Christianity as something quite normal and necessary. It is believed that this crucifixion made the gulf between mankind and God closer and even in the minds of some this gulf was completely bridged by this act.
Christian doctrine is based on this simple assumption and many of us have based our salvation on this. While this remains the foundation of Christian belief, it is also important for all of us to try and sit back and consider and think about these matters ourselves. Let us try and demonstrate some degree of independent thinking in these matters without having to accept existing doctrines.
It is instructive to note that all that Jesus taught and did during His Life on earth lies in contradistinction to this assumption. The early years were critical in the development of Christian doctrine and much that we accept today as being inviolable truth arose out of the assumptions and lack of understanding of the early authors who did not really understand Jesus. How often did Jesus upbraid His disciples for their lack of understanding of His words?
To now base our salvation on something so uncertain and on writings which arose out of a complete or partial lack of understanding of Jesus by His disciples and others could make our salvation impossible.
A few events occured with the passing away of Jesus on the Cross. Once He breathed His last, the curtain in the Temple of Jerusalem which housed the Holy of Holies was torn and there were earthquakes, and darkness moved over Golgotha. The question we must ask ourselves is why these changes? They certainly sound ominous and do not at all resemble the reconciliation with God that have become the popular interpretation.
Why would there be darkness if the death of Jesus was meant to reconcile God with mankind? Why would the Holy of Holies be exposed for all eyes to see and for impure currents to penetrate into? Why would there be earthquakes if the crucifixion of Jesus was meant to be something agreeable to God?
It is left to us to begin to think these matters through ourselves and not just accept ready-made doctrines passed down through centuries by those who did not fully understand their Master or by those who came later and never really came into contact with Him.
Only the truth in these matters and our voluntary independent examination which leads to conviction will set us free and not the blind acceptance of someone else’s concepts.
May the Lord give us the strength to lift ourselves spiritually and begin to see these issues as they really are. Amen.