Who Killed Jesus? (Version 2)

Posted on January 29, 2020


By David Ettinger

Note: This is an alternate version of a similar post I wrote several years ago. I just wanted to examine an additional angle. The link to the original is below.

Hateful Belief
Down through the centuries the answer has been, “The Jews!”

One of the primary instigators of this hateful belief has been the Church, though this conviction has been declining in the past 50 or 60 years. Yet, there are still enough pockets of Jew-blamers inhabiting American and European Christendom to keep the defamation coming. Blaming Jesus’ death on the Jewish people has been a pastime of the Church for centuries, and it is something large sectors of it just can’t let go of.

Yet, the Bible tells us it was the Romans who carried out the deed. “Yes,” many object, “but it was the Jews who baited them.” The Jewish and Roman leadership did join to crucify Jesus. Yes, human agents were involved in Jesus’ death, but because this is the way He designed it.

The Obvious Answer
The truth of the matter should be obvious. A quick perusal of the Gospels makes clear who killed Jesus. Jesus killed Jesus. In fact, Jesus came to Earth to die for the sins of humanity. Jesus Himself sheds all the light on the issue we need. Here is His own testimony (emphasis added):

  • “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45).
  • “… just as the Father knows me and I know the Father – and I lay down my life for the sheep” (John 10:15).
  • “The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life – only to take it up again” (John 10:17).
  • “Now my soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour” (John 12:27).

And the most convincing piece of evidence:

  • No one takes it [my life] from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father” (John 10:8).

This was Jesus’ expressed intention. He came to Earth in “the fulness of the time” (Galatians 4:4) – i.e., the perfect time in history – to die in a very specific place, in a very specific way, and at the hands of very specific people. Jesus was not the victim of circumstances; HE CREATED THE CIRCUMSTANCES. He was the agent of His own death on the cross.

Ironically …
… if Jesus did not die for the sins of the world, you and I would be hopelessly lost in our sins and destined for eternal damnation. Jesus deliberately came to Earth to free the human race (those who would accept His blood sacrifice) from this fate. Therefore, if segments of the Church insist on blaming the Jews of killing Jesus, then at least they should thank them for it.

The 14th century painter Pacino di Bonaguida understood the intentionality of Jesus’ death as one of his most famous works depicts Jesus eagerly using a ladder to climb upon the cross! Of course this is inaccurate, but it makes the theological point that Jesus willingly came to die.

And for the record, had Jesus come at any time in history to any nation on Earth, He still would have been put to death. At that time in history it was the Jews and Romans. Today it easily could be a Western nation.

No human being is innocent in Christ’s death as it was our sins which put Him on the cross. Aren’t you glad He absolved us when He said: “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (John 23:34)!