|PSALMS 22, CHRIST'S CRUCIFIXION
This article is written in preparation for Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. It is in support of the effort to
bring the Jews to Christ by explaining how He fulfilled the prophecies of the Old Testament. Here is the
prophecy that the Jews will repent for refusing Christ.
"And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and
of supplications: and they shall look upon Me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for Him, as
one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for Him, as one that is in bitterness for his
firstborn. In that day shall there be a great mourning in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in
the valley of Megiddon. And the land shall mourn, every family apart; the family of the house of David
apart, and their wives apart; the family of the house of Nathan apart, and their wives apart; the family of
the house of Levi apart, and their wives apart; the family of Shimei apart, and their wives apart; all the
families that remain, every family apart, and their wives apart." (Zech. 12:10-14). (For a full explanation,
see No. 23, "Saving Judah"). The mourning for Christ shall take place on Yom Kippur.
That the Crucifixion of Christ is the subject of Psalms 22 is obvious from the first verse. "My God, My
God, why hast thou forsaken Me? why art thou so far from helping Me, and from the words of My
roaring?" (Ps. 22:1). As Christ was just about to die, His Father and Mother left Him (so that He could die).
"And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say,
My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken Me?" (Matt. 27:46). Christ felt the loss of support, "why art thou
so far from helping Me?" In His agony, He roared, "the words of My roaring," because He was a man of
Judah, a Lion. "Judah is a lion’s whelp..." (Gen. 49:9). Christians consider Christ to be the Lion of Judah.
"And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David,
hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof." (Rev. 5:5).
Christ was despised and afflicted. "O my God, I cry in the daytime, but thou hearest not; and in the night
season, and am not silent. But Thou art holy, O Thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel. Our fathers
trusted in Thee: they trusted, and Thou didst deliver them. They cried unto Thee, and were delivered:
they trusted in Thee, and were not confounded. But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and
despised of the people." (Ps. 22:2-6).
"He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were
our faces from Him; He was despised, and we esteemed Him not. Surely He hath borne our griefs, and
carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted." (Is. 53:3,4).
"All they that see Me laugh Me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying, He trusted
on the Lord that He would deliver Him: let Him deliver Him, seeing He delighted in Him." (Ps. 22:7,8). This
scripture was fulfilled before and after the crucifixion.
"Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the common hall, and gathered unto Him the whole
band of soldiers. And they stripped Him, and put on Him a scarlet robe. And when they had platted a
crown of thorns, they put it upon His head, and a reed in His right hand: and they bowed the knee before
Him, and mocked Him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews! And they spit upon Him, and took the reed, and
smote Him on the Head. Likewise also the chief priests mocking Him, with the scribes and elders, said,
He saved others; Himself He cannot save. If He be the King of Israel, let Him now come down from the
cross, and we will believe Him. He trusted in God; let Him deliver Him now, if He will have Him: for He
said, I am the Son of God." (Matt. 27:27-30,41-43).
"But thou art He that took Me out of the womb: Thou didst make Me hope when I was upon My mother’s
breasts. I was cast upon Thee from the womb: Thou art My God from My mother’s belly." (Ps. 22:9,10). A
number of scriptures confirm that Christ was formed by God for His purposes.
"Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and
shall call His name Immanuel." (Is. 7:14).
"And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, to a
virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was
Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee:
blessed art thou among women. And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her
mind what manner of salutation this should be. And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast
found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt
call His name Jesus. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall
give unto Him the throne of His father David: and He shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of
His kingdom there shall be no end. Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a
man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of
the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be
called the Son of God." (Luke 1:26-35).
"Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph,
before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. Then Joseph her husband, being
a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily. But while he
thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph,
thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the
Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call His name Jesus: for He shall save His
people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by
the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call His
name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us." (Matt. 1:18-23).
"Be not far from Me; for trouble is near; for there is none to help. Many bulls have compassed Me:
strong bulls of Bashan have beset Me round. They gaped upon Me with their mouths, as a ravening and
a roaring lion." (Ps. 22:11-13).
The bulls of Bashan are a symbol of a the powerful men (bulls, leaders) in a herd of oppressors. "Hear
this word, ye kine (cattle) of Bashan, that are in the mountain of Samaria, which oppress the poor, which
crush the needy, which say to their masters, Bring, and let us drink." (Amos 4:1). The bulls are the elders
and the chief priests. Those that roar as lions are the men of Judah. Together they condemned Christ to
"Therefore when they were gathered together, Pilate said unto them, Whom will ye that I release unto
you? Barabbas, or Jesus which is called Christ? For he knew that for envy they had delivered him. But
the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they should ask Barabbas, and destroy Jesus.
The governor answered and said unto them, Whether of the twain will ye that I release unto you? They
said, Barabbas. Pilate saith unto them, What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ? They all say
unto him, Let Him be crucified. And the governor said, Why, what evil hath He done? But they cried out
the more, saying, Let Him be crucified. When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a
tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the
blood of this just person: see ye to it. Then answered all the people, and said, His blood be on us, and on
our children." (Matt. 27:17,18,20-25). Only by repenting before God for the crucifixion of Christ can the
children of Judah remove the blood of Christ which stains them in God's eyes.
The next verses are a physical description of the horror that is crucifixion. "I am poured out like water,
and all My bones are out of joint: My heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of My bowels. My strength
is dried up like a potsherd; and My tongue cleaveth to My jaws; and Thou hast brought Me into the dust
of death. For dogs (men unfit for God's Kingdom) have compassed Me: the assembly of the wicked have
inclosed Me: they pierced My hands and My feet (nailed Him to the cross). I may tell all My bones: they
look and stare upon Me." (Ps. 22:14-17).
The soldiers who crucified Christ also fulfilled prophecy. "They part My garments among them, and cast
lots upon My vesture." (Ps. 22:18). "And they crucified Him, and parted His garments, casting lots: that it
might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted My garments among them, and upon My
vesture did they cast lots." (Matt. 27:35).
"But be not thou far from Me, O Lord: O My strength, haste Thee to help Me. Deliver My soul from the
sword; My darling from the power of the dog." (Ps. 22:19,20).
These verses relate to a prophesy of Christ made in the temple when He was a babe. "And, behold, there
was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for
the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him. And it was revealed unto him by the Holy
Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. And he came by the Spirit into
the temple: and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for Him after the custom of the law,
then took he Him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said, Lord, now lettest Thou Thy servant depart in
peace, according to Thy word: for mine eyes have seen Thy salvation, which Thou hast prepared before
the face of all people; a light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of Thy people Israel. And Joseph and
His mother marvelled at those things which were spoken of Him. And Simeon blessed them, and said
unto Mary His mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign
which shall be spoken against; (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts
of many hearts may be revealed." (Luke 2:26-35). Just as the sword pierced Christ's soul, it also pierced
His mother's soul as she stood watching Him die.
Christ prayed that God deliver His "darling from the power of the dog." Dogs are wicked men. "Blessed
are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through
the gates into the city. For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and
idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie." (Rev. 22:14,15). Christ's most beloved, His darling,
was God's Kingdom, which He brought forth on earth.
"Save Me from the lion’s mouth: for Thou hast heard Me from the horns of the unicorns." (Ps. 22:21). The
lions again are the men of Judah who opposed Christ and sought to devour His ministry, "save Me from
the lion’s mouth." Christ existed as a heavenly being from the time of the creation, "Thou hast heard Me
(speaking to You) from the (time of the creation of the) horns of the unicorns."
Speaking of Christ, John said: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word
was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by Him; and without Him was not
any thing made that was made. In Him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the Word was made
flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full
of grace and truth." (John 1:1-4,14).
"I will declare Thy name unto My brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise Thee." (Ps. 22:22).
This is the prophecy of Christ's three and a half year ministry glorifying God before His brethren of Judah
and in the synagogues.
"Ye that fear the Lord, praise Him; all ye the seed of Jacob, glorify Him; and fear Him, all ye the seed of
Israel." (Ps. 22:23). Christ's ministry is specifically to the seed of Israel, both the known and the lost
"For He (God) hath not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; neither hath He hid His face
from Him; but when He cried unto Him, He heard. My praise shall be of Thee in the great congregation: I
will pay My vows before them that fear Him." (Ps. 22:24,25). God loved Christ and raised Him up from His
affliction. Christ praises Him before the angels, the great congregation of those that fear God.
"He (God) shall see of the travail of His (Christ's) soul, and shall be satisfied: by His knowledge (of
shameful death) shall My righteous servant justify many; for He shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I
divide Him a portion with the great (make Him a ruler of the earth), and He shall divide the spoil with the
strong (God shall take the riches of the wicked and give Christ a share); because He hath poured out His
soul unto death: and He was numbered with the transgressors; and He bare the sin of many, and made
intercession for the transgressors." (Is. 53:11-12).
"The meek shall eat and be satisfied: they shall praise the Lord that seek Him: your heart shall live for
ever." (Ps. 22:26). Christ came to establish God's Kingdom on behalf of the meek of the earth. "Blessed
are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth." (Matt. 5:5). In God's Kingdom, even the poorest shall have
plenty of good food to eat, all shall sing the Lord's praises, and all shall have everlasting life.
"All the ends of the world shall remember and turn unto the Lord: and all the kindreds of the nations
shall worship before Thee. For the kingdom is the Lord's: and He is the governor among the nations."
Christ fulfilled prophecies of the establishment of God's Kingdom. "The spirit of the Lord God is upon
Me; because the Lord hath anointed Me to preach good tidings unto the meek; He hath sent Me to bind
up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are
bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all
that mourn; to appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for
mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of
righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He might be glorified." (Is. 61:1-3).
"And He (Christ) came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up: and, as His custom was, He went into
the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read. And there was delivered unto Him the book
of the prophet Esaias. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written, The
Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He hath anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He hath
sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the
blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord. And He closed
the book, and He gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the
synagogue were fastened on Him. And He began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in
your ears." (Luke 4:16-21).
"When the men were come unto Him, they said, John Baptist hath sent us unto Thee, saying, Art Thou He
that should come? or look we for another? And in that same hour He cured many of their infirmities and
plagues, and of evil spirits; and unto many that were blind He gave sight. Then Jesus answering said
unto them, Go your way, and tell John what things ye have seen and heard; how that the blind see, the
lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, to the poor the gospel is
preached. And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in Me." (Luke 7:20-23).
"All they that be fat upon earth shall eat and worship: all they that go down to the dust shall bow before
Him: and none can keep alive his own soul." (Ps. 22:29). God is to rule over all men, even the richest and
most powerful, "they that be fat upon earth." "And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to
another, and from one Sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before Me, saith the Lord." (Is.
All that die shall acknowledge God, "all they that go down to the dust shall bow before Him." Only God
can preserve their souls, "none can keep alive his own soul." "And I saw a great white throne, and Him
that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for
them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another
book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were
written in the books, according to their works. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life
was cast into the lake of fire." (Rev. 20:11,12,15).
"A seed shall serve Him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation." (Ps. 22:30). Christ sowed the
seed referred to in this verse. "He (Christ) answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed
is the Son of man; the field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom..." (Matt. 13:37,38).
"So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at
hand. Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled." (Luke 21:31,32). The
Christian church (the seed), shall not pass away until the Kingdom of God has taken over the earth and
every prophecy has been fulfilled. The observances of the daily and the Sabbath and the Feastdays shall
never pass away.
"They shall come, and shall declare His (Christ's) righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that He
hath done this." (Ps. 22:31). The seed, the followers of Christ, shall preach the crucifixion of the
righteous Son of God to generations yet unborn, until every purpose of God has been fulfilled upon the
Amo Paul Bishop Roden