Eli Eli lama sabachthani? (Matthew 27:46 and Mark 15:34).
That statement is translated as “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” Up until this point, Jesus had demonstrated such inner fortitude and peace and compassion and strength of character. Then, everything changes without warning and Jesus cries out.
I found it unusual at first glance that Jesus would not cry out earlier. He didn’t cry out when he was being beaten or mocked or the nails were being driven through his wrists and feet. Why now?
Theologically, 2 Cor 5:21 explains that on the cross, Christ became sin. Christ, the man who was pure and morally perfect and completely sinless became sin for us, an object of wrath. And as a final act of judgment, God turned his face away from Christ and removed his presence. And it was precisely at that moment when Jesus cried out, Eli Eli lama sabachthani?
The greater the intimacy, the deeper the pain when the relationship is broken. If I never see my dentist again because we get into an argument over her flossing technique, I won’t be that hurt because we barely know each other. But if something happens between me and my best friend, there will be deep pain and crying out. Something came in between me and my best friend from college about 6 years ago and our relationship is still broken. And to this day, there is a part of me that cries out. The greater the intimacy, the deeper the pain.
And for all eternity, Jesus had experienced a deep and uninterrupted intimacy with God the Father. And when that intimacy is broken for the first time, he cries out. The greater the intimacy, the deeper the pain.
This made me ask myself, what makes me cry out? I cry out for so many petty things. I cry out when someone cuts me off on the freeway. I cry out when someone criticizes me or makes me feel incompetent or insignificant. But do I cry out when sin infiltrates my life and my intimacy with God is broken? Perhaps, my values are all messed up. Something to think about…