1 Peter 3:18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the JUST for the unjust, that HE might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit.
Our Lord Jesus lived His life reaching out to sinners. His first disciples were not the “cream of the crop.” His closest associates ranged from simple village fishermen to a Roman sympathizing tax collector named Matthew. They were all from the wrong side of the tracks!!! They were not selected from their communities to be members of the prestigious Rotary Club, or for that matter, any gentleman’s club. They primarily labored within the shores of the Sea of Galilee. With this said, how did Jesus become so popular? Why did the masses seek Him out? Better yet, why did they follow Him? What was it about Him that drew multitudes? Keep in mind that Jesus’ own personal life was simple and humble from His birth to His last hours suspended between two convicted criminals. My goodness, He was even from Nazareth! Did anything good or anyone great ever come from the “arm pit” area of Palestine? Think of all the opportunities the multitudes had to find out who Jesus was and why He came. Why am I making so much to do over Jesus, His followers, and their backgrounds?
Jesus knew that He would never be named among the world’s elites. He knew who He was and what He came to do. He knew that He would never be a popular politician, or for that matter, a sitting member of Israel’s Highest Court, the Sanhedrin. Everything I have described and much that I left out was true from Jesus’ birth to His death! Even the length of His life speaks to His Father’s will for Him. In case you didn’t know, Jesus died as a young man at 33 years of age. Let’s cut to the chase. What’s the bottom line here? Jesus did not come to establish an earthly kingdom. The long and short of it is this; He came to die. He came to die at the hands of sinners identifying as God’s people. They were squeaky clean members of Israel’s religious hierarchy, but they needed to be saved from sin just as badly as we do! As we ponder Jesus’ death and why He came, let’s remember that He came to call sinners to Himself. Jesus did not die simply to make us better people. He didn’t die to make life easier for us all. He came to save us from our sins.
As we slowly but surely make our way to Jesus’ empty tomb, let’s reflect on why Jesus came and why He had to die. He did it for you and for me!
Luke 19:10 (KJV) For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.