Despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief... we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed.
All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so he opened not his mouth....
He was cut off out of the land of the living, stricken for the transgression of my people.... There was no deceit in his mouth. Yet it was the will of the LORD to crush him; he has put him to grief.
THE PROPHET ISAIAH CHAPTER 53, VERSES 3-10
The most important question of the twenty-first century is: Why did Jesus Christ suffer so much? But we will never see this importance if we fail to go beyond human cause. The ultimate answer to the question, Who crucified Jesus? is: God did. It is a staggering thought. Jesus was his Son. And the suffering was unsurpassed. But the whole message of the Bible leads to this conclusion.
Would you, then, merciful Father, grant that all who read this book would see their need, and see your perfect provision in Christ, and believe. I pray this because of the promise of your Son: "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that who-ever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life" (John 3:16). In Jesus' merciful name, I pray, amen.
The most important questions anyone can ask are: Why was Jesus Christ crucified? Why did he suffer so much? What has this to do with me? Finally, who sent him to his sdeath? The answer to the last question is that God did. Jesus was God's Son. The suffering was unsurpassed, but the whole message of the Bible leads to this answer.
The central issue of Jesus' death is not the cause, but the meaning-God's meaning. That is what this book is about. John Piper has gathered from the New Testament fifty reasons. Not fifty causes, but fifty purposes-in answer to the most important question that each of us must face: What did God achieve for sinners like us in sending his Son to die?
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:06:44 -0400)