As we prepare for Holy Week, we will examine Matthew’s crucifixion account. Matthew gives us very little information about the physical sufferings of Jesus. There is little about blood, beatings, or flayed flesh. We can imagine it, but Matthew’s focus is elsewhere. He focuses primarily on the mockery Jesus endured. And the primary way he makes his point is through irony. Matthew uses irony to bring into sharp focus the real issues. He enables the readers and the hearers to see what is really going on, the irony provides a dimension of depth and color that would otherwise be missing. This week we are going to look at four ironies of the cross:
1. The man mocked as king, really is.
2. The man mocked as being powerless, is powerful beyond measure.
3. The man who “can’t save himself” is actually saving others.
4. The man who is crying out in despair, is actually trusting God. These four ironies bring us to the very heart of what Christ accomplished for us and for our salvation.