Think back to your childhood for a moment. Was there ever a time when you were punished for something you didn’t do? Maybe your little brother ate the cookies and framed you for it. Or maybe you happened to be close to the window broken by your sister when your mom came home. What was your reaction? Was forgiveness the first thing that came to mind? Unlikely…
Crucifixion was a Roman punishment that was designed to have maximum shock value. It was a painful and drawn out death, in full view of the public. Even countries that still have capital punishment today will agree that this was a cruel punishment indeed.
Jesus was completely innocent. Even Pontius Pilate, the Roman prefect in Judea at the time, found Him innocent.
Luke 23:4 (WEBBE): 4Pilate said to the chief priests and the multitudes, “I find no basis for a charge against this man.”
By human standards, I think we can agree that it would have been perfectly reasonable for Jesus to be outraged at how He was treated.
However, God is love.
Luke 23:33-34 (WEBBE): 33When they came to the place that is called “The Skull”, they crucified him there with the criminals, one on the right and the other on the left.
34Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.” Dividing his garments amongst them, they cast lots.
Jesus forgave the people that tortured and killed Him! That is perfect love!