It is Good Friday in America. We have another week to go here in Bulgaria. This morning I read the story of the death of Jesus as told by Mark. I noticed something I had never noticed before. Mark 15:31 reads, "In the same way, the chief priests and teachers of the law mocked him among themselves. "He saved others," they said, "but he can't save himself!" (emphasis added).
I had never noticed before that their mocking of Jesus was not totally public. Unlike others who were watching, they were not mocking Jesus directly. They were patting each other on the back for a job well done. They were murdering and proud of it.
My first thought was how vile they were. Who would sin in such a way and be proud of it? But then, I remembered all the sins I have done intentionally. True, I have never murdered or even killed another human being, but I have intentionally hurt people just because I wanted to. I have been proud that I did it, and considered it a job well done. How much better am I really?
With this thought in my head, verse 37 hit me all the harder. "With a loud cry, Jesus breathed his last." It other accounts we read that this loud cry was, "It is finished." This is a translation of a word which was used at the time by runners finishing a long race. It was a yell of victory. With this shout, he defeated the sin in humanity. He defeated the sin in those mocking him. He defeated the sin in those patting themselves on the back for his murder.
He defeated the sin in me.
He defeated the sin in you.
And that's not even the end of the story.