February 18 | Psalm 22:1-2; Matthew 27:46
“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me, so distant from saving me, the words of my crowning? My God, I cry out by day but you don’t answer, and by night but there is no rest for me.” (Psalm 22:1–2)
“And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lama sabacbthany?” (which means, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?”)” (Matthew 27:46)
How many times in your life have you cried out to God and felt you hit a brass ceiling? Scripture promises God hears every prayer. But we don’t always feel he is there. We are not alone.
As Jesus hung on the cross, he experienced the darkest time of his life. At the end of his suffering around 3 PM that Friday, Jesus would lay his spirit in the Father’s hands. And he cried out the opening lines of Psalm 22, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
Did he feel the Father’s absence in that moment? Surely he did. God cannot look upon sin and Jesus had taken on the sin of the world, a weight the sinless Son had never felt before. But he had another reason for crying out.
Psalm 22 parallels Jesus’ death on the cross. He spoke these words to reference the whole Psalm. He wasn’t expressing abandonment. Psalm 22 declares God’s victory in the midst of his pain and death. Jesus declares God’s victory.
Action Step: Jesus died for you. But he also won a victory for the kingdom. Thank Jesus for his victory over death and sin on the cross. Bless his name because you are counted among the overcomers.
Heavenly Father, I’m so glad you don’t abandon your children. I am not forsaken and you hear every prayer. Thank you for your victory over sin, Hell, death, and the grave. I walk in Jesus’ victory because of your plan for my salvation. Thank you, Jesus, for suffering in my place. I walk in your freedom.