Daily Word

If He came down | Matthew 27:38-44

38 At that time two robbers *were crucified with Him, one on the right and one on the left. 39 And those passing by were [ r ]hurling abuse at Him, wagging their heads 40 and saying, “You who are going to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save Yourself! If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross.”

41 In the same way the chief priests also, along with the scribes and elders, were mocking Him and saying, 42 “He saved others; [ s ]He cannot save Himself. He is the King of Israel; let Him now come down from the cross, and we will believe in Him. 43 He trusts in God; let God rescue Him now, if He [ t ]delights in Him; for He said, ‘I am the Son of God.’” 44 The robbers who had been crucified with Him were also insulting Him with the same words.

Matthew 27:38-44 (NASB) 中文

Road to calvary

Jesus is now hanging on the cross at Golgotha, the Place of a Skull. Matthew’s focus of the crucifixion is not the blood and gore but the mocking abuse Jesus has to endure. Though some abuse has already occurred (like the soldiers dressing Him as a king and insulting Him), today’s passage gets to the bulk of it.

In company of thieves

There were three crucified that day. Two thieves with Jesus in the middle. “In His crucifixion, Jesus stood right in the center of sinful humanity. With the mockery of the criminals, the rejection of Jesus by His people is complete. Even criminals rejected Him.” (enduringword.com)

Prove you are God

Some in the crowd who passed by and the religious leaders mock Him by challenging His power and authority, His claim to be equal with God. Even the two thieves joined in! “Prove it and come down from the cross”, they taunt. They even quote Psalm 22:8, “Turn him over to the LORD; let Him save him; Let Him rescue him, because He delights in him.” In this they bring about the fulfilling of yet another prophecy!

If He came down

Why didn’t Jesus do as they said and come down from the cross. That would have proved He is Messiah right? And they’d all believe, just like they are saying here in this passage. If Jesus really came down from the cross, would they really believe? 

No. They already had enough proof. The miracles, the teaching, the fulfillment of prophecy. “But Jesus, on His part, was not entrusting Himself to them, because He knew all people,” (John 2:24) And if He came down, He would sin and ruin God’s plan of salvation.


  • Jesus endured the cross. He stayed on it and suffered the pain. Why? Please take a moment to meditate on this and ask God to instruct you and show you. 
  • If you can imagine, this was not the worst part of the crucifixion. That is yet to come! Can you guess what it is?
  • And Jesus actually did come down. Philipian 2 tells us He came down from Heaven, to become incarnate as a man, Emmanuel. 
Crucifixion. Image from Pxfuel.com

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