By Pastor Bruce K. Oyen and Dr. Henry M. Morris
At this time of year, many of us Christians focus our attention on the events leading up to the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. The place at which he was wrongly and horribly murdered by crucifixion is known as “Calvary,” which means “the place of a skull.” It is good for us to read the historical accounts of the events involved in the Lord’s death, burial, and literal physical resurrection. Those events can be read in the last few chapters of Mattthew, Mark, Luke, and John, which are the four Gospels of the New Testament.
One of the strange events that took place at the Lord’s crucifixion was the gambling by the Roman soldiers. What follows is about their gambling, and is taken from a daily devotional booklet called “Days Of Praise.” It is publsihed by The Institute For Creation Research, which is a Bible-believing organization known for its good defense of the Biblical account of the divine, miraculous, and recent creation of the universe. The “Days Of Praise” devotional will be sent to you free each day by email, if you go to ICR’s website and sign up for it. Here’s a link to the website: www.icr.org. Look on the lefthand side for the button to sign up for “Days Of Praise.”
Here is the reading for April 18, 2014. It was written by Dr. Henry M. Morris:
|April 18, 2014
Gambling at Calvary
“They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.” (Psalm 22:18)
The 22nd Psalm is justly famous as a remarkable prophetic preview of the sufferings and death of the Lord Jesus on the cross, written by David approximately 1,000 years before it was fulfilled. It describes in accurate detail the sufferings of the Lord and the actions of the sneering spectators as they watched Him die.
One of the most heartless acts of the Roman soldiers carrying out the crucifixion was the indignity of stripping Him of the garments He was wearing and then dividing them among themselves, even gambling to determine who would get His seamless vesture. The significance of this cruel scene is indicated by the fact that it is one of the very few specific events in the life of Christ recorded in all four Gospels.
We must not forget that the Lord Jesus Christ once had been arrayed, as it were, in beautiful garments that “smell of myrrh, and aloes, and cassia, out of the ivory palaces” (Psalm 45:8). But He who was “equal with God” chose to be “made in the likeness of men” that He might eventually suffer “even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:6-8) in order to save our unworthy souls. “For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich” (2 Corinthians 8:9).
He who had created the heavens, when He came to Earth, had to say that “the Son of man hath not where to lay his head” (Matthew 8:20). And His few remaining possessions were scavenged by His executioners as He died. Yet through His great sacrifice, He has provided “everlasting habitations” for us (Luke 16:9) and “all spiritual blessings in heavenly places” (Ephesians 1:3). Indeed, we do know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ! HMM