We have just gone through the Easter season in 2021, and there are so many wonderful gifts we have been given by God through Christ’s lavish sacrifice for us. We trust you have been able to celebrate the crucifixion, burial, and resurrection of Jesus with your families and enjoyed the reminder of the grace gift you have now in Him.
During this Easter season, you may not have taken some time to look at every little part of the Passion of Christ and the specific meanings and clues to redemption they convey to us. We are going to look at three specific occurrences of the Passion today and talk about why they happened and why they were included in the crucifixion story. God caused each of these things to occur to Jesus for a reason. The Holy Spirit then divinely-inspired the authors of the New Testament to write them down for our education and edification. There are nuggets of our freedom woven all throughout the Passion Story.
If the only purpose of Jesus’s death and resurrection was to purchase our entrance into Heaven, then the rest of the Passion was unnecessary and would have been cruel for God to require it of Him. But there is so much more to it. Every single part of the Passion story plays a vital purpose in setting us free in very specific areas in our lives.
Jesus’s Crown of Thorns Defeats Depression
John 19:2 says,
And the soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on His head, and put a purple robe on Him…
The meaning behind the original Greek word for “twisted” adds dimension to these images:
- “Twisted” – comes from pleko, which means to plait, weave, or twist
- “Thorns” – were a direct result of the curse of sin on mankind and symbolized sinful man’s efforts to meet his own needs
- “On His head” – seat of our thoughts, memories, reasoning abilities
Our perverted, twisted thinking from the fall was redeemed as the thorns were driven into Christ’s head. He redeemed our thought-life and our reasoning abilities as He submitted to wearing our crown of thorns on Himself. Because He redeemed us, we have the freedom to not think sinful, twisted thoughts, but instead receive the mind of Christ, as revealed in 1 Corinthians 2:14-16:
But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised. But he who is spiritual appraises all things, yet he himself is appraised by no one. For who has known the mind of the Lord, that he will instruct Him? But we have the mind of Christ.
With the mind of Christ, we are now able to see our circumstances – not as the world sees them, perverted by sin and without hope – but with faith and the ability to see God working on our behalf. This is something we wouldn’t have been able to do otherwise.
What was replaced/redeemed:
- Jesus took away our curse of a twisted, cursed, and perverted mind.
- Jesus purchased for us access to His mind and His ability to reason clearly and accurately based on God’s Word and will (Romans 12:1-2).
Jesus’s Pain Sets Us Free From Addictions
Matthew 27:33-34 says,
And when they came to a place called Golgotha, which means Place of a Skull, they gave Him wine to drink mixed with gall; and after tasting it, He was unwilling to drink.
It was a Roman custom to offer a person being crucified drugged wine to make the suffering easier. Jesus refused the dulling effects of drugs (gall and wine) so He could endure to its fullest extent the physical, mental, and emotional pain of our separation from the God, who is the only source of joy, peace, and life. Jesus was enduring excruciating pain and emptiness, but refused a substance that would have dulled the pain because He refused to endure anything less than the full experience of the crucifixion.
Because He did this for us, we don’t have to endure the pain that causes people to reach for pain-dulling drugs and alcohol in the first place. We don’t have to suffer through the painful loss of the Presence of God in our lives because of our sin and shame. Jesus experienced these pains for us, in our stead, so we could enjoy all the joy, peace, and life He legally walked in and deserved as the sinless Son of God. When we are tempted to reach for mind-altering drugs or alcohol because of our pain, we can instead draw from His eternal source of life and release those pains to Him, who has already carried them for us!
What was replaced/redeemed:
- Jesus took the root cause of drug and alcohol addiction on Himself, and endured great pain in our stead.
- Because of Jesus, we can walk in the life, joy, and peace He had earned and enjoyed during His sinless life.
Jesus’s Teeth Set On Edge Defeated Our Generational Curses
From the time of Adam until Christ, sin had followed the genetic line of mankind. We see time and time again in scripture where the sins of the fathers were passed on to the sons, either the very same actions, or the consequences of them.
One example of this occurring even in Godly men is found in Genesis 20. In this passage, Abraham is recorded saying that Sarah was his sister instead of his wife in order to ensure his own safety. Sarah was beautiful and worldly kings wanted her for themselves, even being willing to kill her husband to acquire her. We see this exact same situation with Abraham and Sarah’s son Isaac, in Genesis 26, as Isaac tells the men in Gerar that Rebecca is his sister to avoid being killed so they could get to her. We see these same sins follow our bloodlines today, as sons and daughters practice perverted ways learned from their fathers and mothers.
Alcoholism, hypertension, cancer, and many other conditions, addictions, and diseases are hereditary – meaning they can be inherited by children from their parents. But because of Jesus and what He did on the cross, these hereditary curses are broken.
Destructive behaviors can also be hereditary, and are the basis for many generational curses that try and assert authority in our lives. If our parents or grandparents displayed anger, pride, lust, or other vices before us, those seeds can germinate in the soil of our youth and lead us down those destructive paths in our own lives. But it is NOT inevitable! We need never confess, “Well, my Dad struggled with poverty so I guess that’s just how my life is going to go as well.” Or “My mom was a shopaholic, so I can’t help it!” No, those destructive behavior patterns stop at the foot of the cross.
How Is This Possible?
A common Jewish idiom that alluded to generational curses says: “The father has eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge.” This explains the tendency that the sins of the father are visited on the sons, and so on.
Using this common Jewish idiom, Jeremiah wrote about generational curses being broken under the New Covenant in Jeremiah 31:29-30:
In those days they will not say again,
‘The fathers have eaten sour grapes,
And the children’s teeth are set on edge.’
But everyone will die for his own iniquity;
each man who eats the sour grapes,
his teeth will be set on edge.
These verses indicate that every curse in your family, every negative word spoken over you, they’re all broken and made ineffective because of the cross. Jesus took upon Himself the generational curses that came through the bloodline of Adam – affecting every sinner in that bloodline – when He took upon Himself the teeth set on edge on the cross. He was displaying in the natural the supernatural and spiritual exchange that was taking place. John 19:28-30 says,
After this, Jesus, knowing that all things had already been accomplished, to fulfill the Scripture, said, “I am thirsty.” A jar full of sour wine was standing there; so they put a sponge full of the sour wine upon a branch of hyssop and brought it up to His mouth. Therefore when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And He bowed His head and gave up His spirit.
So, not only did Jesus cancel out the curses that come on us because of our own perverted, sinful behavior, He also canceled out any curse that would come to us because of our ancestors as well. He truly became a curse for us, so that we might receive God’s blessing. Galatians 3:13-14 says,
Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we would receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
What was replaced/redeemed:
- Jesus took ALL the generational curses from us on the cross.
- As we believe in His finished work for us, the effects of any hereditary diseases and the sins of our ancestors no longer have any power over us.
These things were done for you by Jesus over 2000 years ago and they still belong to you today. You can walk in the freedom that was purchased for you by meditating on these truths and asking the Holy Spirit to reveal to you how they apply to your life. Jesus went through immense torture, pain, and suffering so you could be free, and you honor Him by receiving it!