Jesus’ Suffering: Why?
Jesus suffered to save us. But what was his sufferings all about? Before I want to answer that question, I first want to show what the problem was. When we understand this, we will beter understand what the reason for Jesus’ suffering was and why he suffered in the way he did. Let’s start by looking at how the original situation was when God created everything.
This is only Part A of this teaching. To read the complete teaching, go to What Jesus’ Suffering Was All About
Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” ~ Genesis 1,26-28 ~
Then the LORD God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being. Now the LORD God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed. The LORD God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground — trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. In the middle of the garden were the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. … The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take of it. And the LORD God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.” ~ Genesis 2,7-9 & 2,15-16 ~
Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame. … Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day. ~ Genesis 2,19 & 3,8 ~
The above passages show how good God had created life. In the first passage we read that mankind was created in the image of God to rule over the earth. In other words, he made them like kings and queens to take care the earth. In the second passage we read that God personally formed man and breathed life in them. God even prepared a garden for man to live in. Life in the garden was very good. As we can also read in the last passage, Adam and his wife were unashamed and God walked with them in the garden.
However, to live this blessed life as kings and queens, there was only one condition for mankind. They had to submit to God who created them. Therefore, they shouldn’t eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. They could eat from the tree of life and all the other trees in the garden.
Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’ ” “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves. Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden. But the LORD God called to the man, “Where are you?” He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.” ~ Genesis 3,1-10 ~
We read here that man and his wife were deceived and eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. The consequences are noticed immediately. Both man and his wife feel naked and ashamed. Not only for each other, but also for God. The garden was such a blessed place to live, but this was lost. Read more about the consequences announced by God.
To the woman he said, “I will make your pains in childbearing very severe; with painful labor you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.” To Adam he said, “Because you listened to your wife and ate fruit from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘You must not eat from it,’ Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat food from it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return.” … And the LORD God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.” So the LORD God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken. After he drove the man out, he placed on the east side of the Garden of Eden cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the three of life. ~ Genesis 3,16-19 & 3,22-24 ~
While man was created in God’s image and had been given life through God’s breath, they lost everything given to them. They were banished from the tree of life, because they would be unable to live righteous while knowing good and evil. In the garden, man could walk with God. However, God had to drive them out of the garden to die, which must have been painful and hard for God. Now the relationship between man and God was broken, man could not rule the earth anymore and lost its royal position. Besides that, God announced that because of their rebellion, life of man will be a struggle and painful. We can see that in the suffering of people around us through sicknesses and broken relationships. This is not how God created the world, but is a result of sin. However, this is not the end. God didn’t lose control. He was still God and prophesied a turn in events.
So the LORD said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, cursed are you above all livestock and all wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life. And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.” ~ Genesis 3,14-15 ~
Adam named his wife Eve, because she would become the mother of all the living. The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. ~ Genesis 3,20-21 ~
The serpent was the deceiver himself clothed like a serpent. This is why “the devil” or “Satan” is later called “the ancient serpent”. Because the serpent deceived man, it is cursed. Besides, God prophesied that there will be a war between mankind and Satan. Even though Satan will make the life of man very hard, Satan will be destroyed. In the latter passage we see a great image of God’s saving plan. God made garments of skin, which must be skin of an animal. God made garments of this skin and clothed Adam and Eve. In other words, God sacrificed an animal to take away the shame of man. This is an image that prophesies what Jesus will do. Jesus will be sacrificed to take away the shame of man.
After the fall of man, God had two options. Because man had fallen in sin, they couldn’t rule over the earth. God could destroy mankind and rule over the earth himself. But this was not what God wanted, therefore he had to restore the position of man. One of the offspring of the woman would be the Son of Man. He will restore the position of man to rule over the earth again.
Mankind was fallen into sin and couldn’t live righteous anymore. The relationship between man and God was lost. Also, because of the fall of man, man would suffer pain and sicknesses, but would suffer from Satan as well. Therefore, for the Son of Man to restore the position of man, he needed to be wounded, to be pierced and to die. I will explain this more when I write about Jesus’ Suffering related to Healing, Forgiveness and Freedom.
God bless you,
Founder of Experience Jesus