And many women who followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering to Him, were there looking on from afar, among whom were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee’s sons. – Matthew 27:55, 56.
Imagine standing there watching your Lord, who had done nothing worthy of the cruel death He was sentenced to suffer, as hang on the cross. I can’t begin to imagine how those women felt but I know that whenever I watch a scene of the crucifixion, it feels me with pain and sorrow. I cry. I know that Jesus suffered on that cross for me and the world. He willingly laid down His precious life so that we could have eternal life. He did it so that we won’t have to experience God’s wrath or be eternally separated from Him. He did it because He was obedient to the Father even unto death. He did it because He loves us.
How amazing it is that God loves us so much that He didn’t think twice about sending His Son to die for our sins. It must have been hard for Him to see His beloved Son being whipped and struck, spat on and mocked but the prophet Isaiah stated: “Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise Him; He has put Him to grief. When You make His soul an offering for sin, He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days, And the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in His hand. He shall see the labor of His soul,and be satisfied. By His knowledge My righteous Servant shall justify many, For He shall bear their iniquities” (Isaiah 53:10, 11). There was a purpose for this horrific death. It was God’s only way to save us. We are that precious in His sight. Our salvation came at a great cost to Him and His Son, yet it cost us nothing.
As one of those women standing there, helplessly watching their beloved Lord hanging between two criminals, with the sins of the world upon His shoulders, bleeding and in excruciating pain, unable to tend to His needs, what would go through your mind? Luke tells us how some of the crowd reacted when He died. And the whole crowd who came together to that sight, seeing what had been done, beat their breasts and returned. Yet, all of His acquaintances, and these women stood at a distance, watching these things (Luke 23:48, 49). Would you stand at a distance too and watch these event unfold? Are you still watching from afar or are you going to stand at the foot of the cross and glorify God as the centurion did? (verse 47).
Today and every opportunity you have, take time to reflect on the work Jesus did on the cross that makes it possible for you to boldly approach the throne of grace. What He did for you over two thousand years ago makes it possible for you to have a loving and saving relationship with God. On that day, those women, when they watched Jesus on the cross, through tear filled eyes, they were seeing the salvation of God. At the time, they were too sorrowful to rejoice but today, we can see past the sorrow and the tears and humbly declare, “For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with Him” (1 Thessalonians 5:0, 10).