Who Killed Jesus?

Mar 24, 2024 | Sunday Devotional

Acts “2:22-23 “Jesus of Nazareth… you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death “.

The question of who killed Jesus has fired a controversy that has raged through the centuries. During the Middle Ages, badly misguided Crusaders killed Jews on their way to free Jerusalem from the Turks. They considered the Jewish people guilty of Christ’s death and wrongly referred to them as “Christ-killers”.

Feelings run deep on this issue yet today. But what does the Bible say? According to Matthew’s account, it appears that the Romans were responsible. The Roman governor Pilate delivered Jesus to death, even while declaring His innocence. The Roman soldiers led Him down and executed Him. Yet Peter, preaching several weeks later in Jerusalem, accused the Jews of crucifying Him. (Acts 2:22-24).

But the larger point is that we all are responsible for Jesus’ death. On the cross, Jesus paid the penalty for the sins of both Jews and Romans, as well as for ours.( First Peter 2:24). He died for every sinner. (Second Corinthians 5:15). That is why people who received Christ as their personal Savior should not argue about who killed Jesus. The truth is that we all did.

Jesus died for all of us. Our sins cost Him His life. But by trusting Him, we receive forgiveness, peace with God and eternal life.

I wonder how many of those who enthusiastically cried, “Hosanna!” on Palm Sunday were shouting, “Crucify Him” a few days later. People were disappointed that Christ didn’t overthrow the Romans and set up an earthly kingdom. In contrast to Jesus’ earlier actions, He didn’t try to dampen the jubilant demonstration as He rode to Jerusalem. Yet neither did He capitalize on the fervor of the crowd and issue a call to arms. Those who longed only for release from foreign domination were disillusioned.

People failed to recognize that before Jesus could assert His sovereignty He had to rule their hearts. The Jews’ greatest need was not freedom from Caesar but release from their own sin. Jesus would rule in power and glory one day, but first He had to pay sin’s penalty on the cross. The key to His kingdom was not revolution but repentance.

Through the centuries the issue had not changed. If we follow Christ only because we think He will shield us from life’s hardship, heal all our sicknesses, and guarantee prosperity, we are headed For disillusionment. (First Corinthians 15:19). But if we renounce sin, take up our cross, and live for Him because He is our God, our Creator, and our Redeemer, we will never be disappointed in Him.

Jesus Took Our Place That We Might Have His Peace, He Took Our Sin That We Might Have His Salvation.

Pastor Paul Okonkwo
Independent Baptist Bible Church (IBBC),
New Haven,

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