The Great Payment | Psalm 22:12-18
Psalm 22:12-18 Many bulls surround me; strong bulls of Bashan encircle me. Roaring lions that tear their prey open their mouths wide against me. I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint. My heart has turned to wax; it has melted within me. My mouth is dried up like a potsherd, and my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth; you lay me in the dust of death. Dogs surround me, a pack of villains encircles me; they pierce my hands and my feet. All my bones are on display; people stare and gloat over me. They divide my clothes among them and cast lots for my garment.
Psalm 22 is the most quoted psalm in the New Testament. Jesus quoted the first sentence from the cross and the rest of the psalm describes the suffering that he endured. David was experiencing a real situation when he wrote it. The words he used to explain his situation well describe the ordeal of Jesus as he died for our sins. Note how this psalm describes the crucifixion.
. . . They pierce my hands and my feet . . . Jesus was nailed to the cross as it lay on the ground. Spikes were driven through his wrists constricting his hands. With his knees slightly bent, one foot was placed on top of the other and a spike was driven through both. Can you imagine the pain?
. . . All my bones are out of joint . . . The cross was then hoisted up and dropped into a pre-dug hole. It slid hard into the hole coming to a jolting stop, separating Jesus’ shoulders.
. . . My mouth is dry . . . my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth . . . Later, knowing that everything had now been finished, and so that Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, “I am thirsty.” John 19:28
. . . People stare and gloat over me . . . Those who passed by hurled insults at him, shaking their heads and saying, “You who are going to destroy the temple and build it in three days, save yourself! Come down from the cross, if you are the Son of God!” Matthew 27:39-40
. . . They divide my clothes . . . When they had crucified him, they divided up his clothes by casting lots. Matthew 27:35
Lord Jesus, thank you for taking on death itself so that I can live as your child now and throughout eternity. Don’t let me forget the awful price you paid for my salvation. Thank you for the grace that gives eternal life to me as a free gift. In your name. Amen.