Day 18

The Crucifixion

from the Mark reading plan

Mark 15:1-47, Psalm 38:20-22, Hebrews 5:7-10

BY Andrea Lucado

Text: Mark 15:1-47, Psalm 38:20-22, Hebrews 5:7-10

Here we are at Mark 15—the crucifixion of our Savior. Would you enter into this text with me?

At the start of this chapter, we find Jesus standing before a crowd of chief priests, elders, and scribes. These men, along with Pilate, do not believe Jesus is the Son of God, and they accuse Him of many things.  

From there, Jesus is taken in front of an even greater crowd, a “multitude.” They, too, refuse to believe He is the Son of God, and demand for Him to die a criminal’s death.

Then, the soldiers take Him away and clothe Him in a robe and a crown of thorns. “Hail, King of the Jews!” they yell (Mark 15:18). But they don’t actually believe Jesus is the Son of God, and so they mock Him, beat Him, and then lead Him away.

Now, as Jesus hangs on the cross, the bystanders and passersby do not believe He is the Son of God. They blaspheme Him and taunt Him.

It seems everyone—Pilate, the chief priests, the multitude, the soldiers—has denied who Christ is. Nobody believes. All are blind and darkness consumes them, both literally and metaphorically.

This is our Good Friday sermon, and we know it well. We know we have to wait until Sunday, resurrection day, before we can talk about hope and life. But if we look closely at this chapter, we see a glimmer of hope begin to slide its way in, right here, in the ninth hour as the darkness lifts and Jesus cries out His final words: “‘Eloi, Eloi, lemá sabachtháni?’ which is translated, ‘My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?’” (Mark 15:34).

Until this moment, all we have seen and heard is denial, skepticism, and accusation toward Christ. Now, in the midst of all these voices, rises one who believes: “When the centurion, who was standing opposite Him, saw the way He breathed His last, he said, ‘This man really was God’s Son!’” (Mark 15:39).

Finally, the truth is spoken about who Jesus really is.

After the centurion, Mark mentions the other believers who were present, like Mary Magdalene, “many other women who came up with Him to Jerusalem,” and Joseph of Arimathea (v. 40-41). The story is still dark, Sunday is not yet here, but as these people are highlighted amongst the unbelievers, we begin to feel all is not lost.

When I read the centurion’s words, I am reminded that our disbelief can never be so strong that it will change the truth about who Christ is. In our darkest moments, when everyone around us—in our country, school, workplace, or home—seems to deny Him, Jesus will always be the Son of God. Nothing we say or do, no amount of denial, can change that. What God ordained from the beginning of time cannot be thwarted by a mob. That was true in Mark 15, and it’s true today.

I am really anxious for us to get to the next part of the story, the beautiful resurrection and the hopeful ascension. But as believers, we know there is hope smack dab in the middle of the darkness. All we have to do is look up at the cross and declare what that centurion did so many years ago. Only this time, let’s use present tense: This man really is God’s Son!

Post Comments (26)

26 thoughts on "The Crucifixion"

  1. Tricia says:

    Amen! Praise you Lord!

  2. Shelbs says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you Jesus.

  3. Leslie says:

    Hope! As we have read through the vantage point of Mark’s Gospel, we have seen hope in action as Jesus loves those around Him, heals those around Him. His very touch left indelible marks for all eternity. He continually demonstrated the Father’s love and His very presence through His actions and words…The Word! This is Who He is! This is what He does! Did this stop at the cross? Absolutely not!! Andrea reminded us of dots of light or hope in a seemingly dark and foreboding canvass as our HOPE hung on a cross, barely holding onto this life. Yet as He hung there gasping to even breathe, battered beyond recognition, exhausted and I’m sure ready for death to finally claim Him, according to Luke, He offered paradise to a convicted criminal hanging beside Him. And according to John, who was at the foot of the cross with Jesus’s mother (I can’t even go there…how her heart must be rent into pieces) He tells his sweet mama, “Woman behold your son” and to John, “Behold, your mother”. In utter agony, He is still ministering, still loving, still healing the brokenhearted…this is our Jesus…our Great Hope our great example. This is Who the Centurion watched. It’s no wonder he declared this was the Son of God. Hope…

    1. Jen says:

      Amen Leslie! Praise you Jesus!

  4. Carrie Rogers says:

    Yes!!! Jesus will always be the Son of God!

  5. I had never caught the hope found in the curtain tearing. The curtain tearing broke the division between God and people since it allowed access into the temple which had up until then been considered the holy place. Jesus’ death gave us access to the holy place. I so often think that it was only after his resurrection that access happened but today I see that access began even prior. I’m so encouraged.

    1. She Reads Truth says:

      LOVE this, Nadine. Thanks for sharing this encouragement with us today!


    2. Krystle says:

      I love that! We have access to our Father any time, any place! ❤️

    3. Angela says:

      I have always seen it not as we going in but He coming out. :)

    4. Missy says:

      My absolute favorite part of the story!! And even the detail that it tore from the top down!!

  6. cj8of8 says:

    God is so faithful..even when everything around us brings us to our knees in despair. . Almost two years ago to the day.. I was in despair. Doing everything I thought God wanted me to do. I thought. I thought. Then I fell. Head first. Then I had absolutely nothing… I thought. Despairing. There was nothing I could do. Broken. I was broken physically and spiritually. Hospitalized. Broken pelvis and right hand. Single and alone. I thought. .. I had to learn how to walk.. With a walker and one hand. The right was broken. I couldn’t lead any more. Jesus became my right hand and my feet. I had to re-learn how to walk.. In His foot steps, and not as I thought. Pride taken. He has healed me in so many ways. Praise you oh God! He knows or names and every hair. He made them, and will never forsake them. Less of me oh God. Those despairing moments are His and He’s holding our right hands teaching us to walk again.

  7. Churchmouse says:

    “Jesus will always be the Son of God.” And so I can confidently stand on all His promises. All the chaos in this world drives me to my knees. The Truth of the Bible compels me to rise again and stand firm. There is indeed Hope in the middle of darkness.

  8. Dana says:

    Amen! Praise Be to the Father of Our Lord, Jesus Christ!

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