Jesus Crucified: Man's Guilt and God's Plan
|Minister:||Rev. Ronald Van Overloop|
- Man’s sinful responsibility.
- The “men of Judea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem” were condemned for not receiving God’s testimony of Jesus (22).
- Peter declares that this Son of God “ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain.”
- The word order puts on the foreground “Him” the victim of their lawless deed.
- Their “hands” literally took hold of Him, whipped Him, and nailed Him.
- These hands were “lawless” instruments of lawless hearts and minds.
- They crucified Him, identifying Him as worthy to die and worthy of the curse of God (excommunication).
- Who are the guilty?
- Behind the cross and man’s wicked hands is God’s “counsel and foreknowledge.”
- Jesus’ death was not accidental.
- Note the boldness with which Peter speaks of God’s determinate (pre-ordained, appointed) will.
- Though impressing his audience with their guilt, Peter does not hesitate to speak of God’s counsel at the same time.
- Peter is preaching the Messiah in which God Himself is involved, revealing His purpose, control, wisdom, and love.
- Important significance.
- This does not remove human responsibility, for our responsibility is determined by God’s commandments.
- God’s decree does not make God the author of sin (Canons I – 15b).
- Whenever we speak of God’s counsel, we are told that it must be done with reverence, discretion and piety (Canons I -14).
- God ruled at the cross, accomplishing His purpose, in spite of the intention of Satan, the Sanhedrin, and wicked men.
- God accomplished redemption and reconciliation for His people in Jesus’ death on the cross.