Did Jesus Understand the Sacrifice He Had to Make?

Biblical Authority Devotional: Consistency of Scripture's Message, Part 8

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Jesus knew all about the sacrifice He was going to make.

Jesus answered and said to them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” (John 2:19)

Today’s big question: did Jesus understand the sacrifice He had to make?

Because Scripture is God-breathed and without error—as we have discussed in previous devotionals—we should expect to see the consistency of God’s Word and its message. And as we read through the gospels, we see that Jesus never said anything contrary to Scripture. This is not surprising because Jesus is the ultimate Author of His Word.

Since Jesus is the Creator (Colossians 1:15–20), and had a plan for our salvation “before the foundation of the world” (Ephesians 1:4), He must have completely understood the plan of salvation and the work that He was to carry out, before He died on the Cross. After all, He planned it! And this is consistently demonstrated in Scripture.

In John 2:19, Jesus said to the Jews, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” Neither the Jews nor the disciples completely understood what He meant at that time (John 2:20–22), but John 2:21 tells us that He was referring to His body.

This is not the only time Jesus referred to His death and Resurrection. For example, Luke 18:31–33 states:

Then He took the twelve aside and said to them, “Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of Man will be accomplished. For He will be delivered to the Gentiles and will be mocked and insulted and spit upon. They will scourge Him and kill Him. And the third day He will rise again.” (Luke 18:31-33)

Jesus clearly understood what was going to happen (John 18:4). He recognized Scripture (i.e., “all things that are written by the prophets”), and He was always consistent with it. The disciples eventually understood what Jesus was saying:

Therefore, when He had risen from the dead, His disciples remembered that He had said this to them; and they believed the Scripture and the word which Jesus had said. (John 2:22)

The disciples recognized that Jesus’ words and the Scriptures were consistent with the events that had taken place. They saw first-hand the fulfillment of Scripture. Understanding the consistency of Scripture means that we must take God’s Word as a whole, rather than picking and choosing passages we want to accept. This is an important concept to keep in mind as we read through Scripture.

Today’s big idea: Scripture and its message are consistent with what Jesus said and did.

What to pray: thank God for sending His Son to die on the Cross for our sins (John 3:16).

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