There were three times that Jesus addressed God as “Father” during his passion:
1. In the garden of Gethsemane: “Abba, Father, if it is possible let this cup pass from me.” Lk 24:22
2. At the crucifixion: “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” Lk. 26:34
3. At his death: “Father into your hands I commend my spirit.” Lk 23:46
Yet, the other time during his passion that Jesus addressed the Father he did not refer to him as “Father” but as “my God.” Mk 15:34
Perhaps at that very moment Satan was making his greatest assault. After all, this man had outsmarted him at every turn. Was he the longed-for Messiah? If so, Satan wanted to break him; otherwise his own dominion would be overthrown. All of the powers of hell were aimed at crushing this person who had so far proven to be indomitable.
Jesus was then writhing under the full weight of mankind’s guilt and sinfulness. “He who knew no sin became sin” for us. Bearing all the guilt of all sin of all time, he faced the totality of God’s just wrath. Yet, submerged in darkness and suffocating in horror, he still held on to “My God!”
It was most certainly a moment beyond all human comprehension – overwhelming like a spiritual tsunami, but after it had passed, Jesus spoke once more, coming full circle: “Father, into your hands, I commend my spirit.” Lk 23:46 The whole of Jesus’ life, suffering and death was always