The Death Part 1.1

 •  2 min. read  •  grade level: 10
1. The death of the Lord was the expression of Israel's rejection of Him, and His way of getting, by resurrection, upon that new ground proper to the church-" From that time forth began Jesus to show unto his disciples, how he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day." (Matt. 16:2121From that time forth began Jesus to show unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day. (Matthew 16:21).)
From WHAT time? From the time that, having experimentally discovered that the Jews were prepared to reject their Messiah, He had for the first time declared that " The knowledge of Himself as the Son of the living God, should become the foundation of a new kingdom, to be called the church." (Read vers. 16-20.) His being killed, therefore, is here to be looked at not only as in itself (as ver. 21) the expression of Jerusalem's. rejection of Him, and of the hatred entertained against Him by false professors of that day; but also as connected with the church in the resurrection; for it was only by resurrection that Jesus got into a place where He could gather Jew and Gentile unto Him, as now gathered in the church.*
(* ‘The Church,' as spoken of here, does not mean simply "God's true people looked at as individuals." We know that God has always had true worshippers in the world-for there have always been on earth. since the fall, some that feared and loved God, but they were not called to be united visibly together. Half a dozen Gentiles might have been true worshippers of God and dwelling in Jerusalem, at a time when no Jews really erred about God-such Gentiles would have been parts of God's elect church, though cut off from the privileges of the outward worship of God's nation, and having no tie to bind them visibly together; for God's accredited worship was that of the Jewish nation. But after Christ died and rose, then God said He would gather together in one in every place those that feared and loved Him, and not accredit any form of worship any more save the union together in one of those who profess to know Jesus. And the church is here used by Christ as the name of this gathering together.)
Let persons who think themselves as religious as those around them, see how the great grace of Jesus in being willing to be killed, proclaimed the utter vileness of all that looked fair in the accredited religion of that day. For where and by whom was the Lord slain? Let us observe also the effect its announcement had upon a true-hearted disciple by reason of his ignorance: "'Then [ver. 22] Peter took him, and began to rebuke him "!!!*
(* How sadly does ignorance always thus unfit us for sympathy with our Lord. There is a striking contrast on this subject, to which I would here revert: in Luke 9:30, 3130And, behold, there talked with him two men, which were Moses and Elias: 31Who appeared in glory, and spake of his decease which he should accomplish at Jerusalem. (Luke 9:30‑31), we read, Two men, " Moses and Ehas," appeared in glory, and spake of His decease (His exodus) which He should accomplish at Jerusalem, and in Mark 9:1010And they kept that saying with themselves, questioning one with another what the rising from the dead should mean. (Mark 9:10), it is added-" they (the disciples] kept that saying with themselves, questioning one with another what the rising from the dead should mean."
In the former of these passages we find the intelligence of heavenly manhood sympathizing with the Lord in His bitter portion; and in the second, the want of intelligence of the infantine state finding sorrow and perplexity even in its own portion of glory which was to issue from that His bitter cup.)
How gracious of Jesus to open the interests of His God and Father as soon as possible to the disciples! to tell them too the subject exercising His own mind; and to invite them thus to enter with Him into the sorrow into which His faithful service to His Father and tender love toward them was leading Him! Compare Mark 8:3131And he began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. (Mark 8:31) Luke 9:2222Saying, The Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be slain, and be raised the third day. (Luke 9:22).