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Mark D. Roberts

Mark D. Roberts

January 1970 Archives

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? The Perspective of Jesus of Nazareth, Part 3

posted by Mark D. Roberts

The Serving Son of Man In my last post in this series, I examined a passage from Mark 10 where James and John ask to be given places of honor and power in the kingdom of God. Jesus responds by […]

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Why Did Jesus Have to Die? The Perspective of Jesus of Nazareth, Part 2

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Drinking the Cup In Mark 10 Jesus not only speaks of his pending death, but also suggests reasons for this death. In verse 33 he says to his disciples, “See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of […]

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Massachusetts 100, Texas -100

posted by Mark D. Roberts

No, this is not some strange March Madness basketball score, though I must say I wouldn’t put anything past this year’s NCAA men’s tournament. It has to be the strangest year on record. In fact, I’m referencing the fact that […]

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Why Did Jesus Have to Die? Another Jewish Perspective . . . The Perspective of Jesus of Nazareth

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Setting Up the Problem According to the New Testament Gospels, Jesus fully expected that he would be tortured and killed. Yet he spoke of his death, not merely as something that would happen, but as something that must happen. So, […]

Sunday Inspiration from The High Calling: Face Down in the Dust

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Face Down in the Dust Psalm 44:1-26 We collapse in the dust, lying face down in the dirt. Rise up! Help us! Ransom us because of your unfailing love. Psalm 44:25-26 Has your life ever been so difficult that you […]

Something to Think About – Gadgets You Can Get Rid Of – NYTimes.com

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Spring Cleaning – Gadgets You Can Get Rid Of – NYTimes.com An article in the Times recommends gadgets you can get rid of. Hey, I don’t even have an alarm clock!

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? One Jewish Perspective, Part 6

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Summing Up One Jewish Perspective In the last five posts I’ve been examining “one” Jewish perspective on the necessity of Jesus’ death. Let me briefly summarize my findings, adding some observations along the way. 1. It’s more accurate to speak […]

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? One Jewish Perspective, Part 5

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Jewish Leaders Respond to Offenses Against the Temple In my last post, I suggested that one of the major causes of Jesus’ death was his “cleansing” of the temple. By interrupting the sacrificial system and by quoting Jeremiah’s own condemnation […]

Social Science Palooza II, by David Brooks

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Check out this delightful and insightful column by one of my favorite writers, David Brooks.

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? One Jewish Perspective, Part 4

posted by Mark D. Roberts

The “Crime” of Jesus My last post in this series focused on the reasons why some Jewish leaders in Jerusalem believed that it was necessary for Jesus to die. The bottom line? He was a threat to their conception of […]

The Beginning of the End of Twitter?

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Four years ago, at the South by Southwest music, technology, and film extravaganza in Austin, Texas, Twitter exploded into public prominence. Soon, the Library of Congress was saving all of our tweets. Yes, all of them! Before long, everybody, it […]

Sunday Inspiration from The High Calling: Riding the Roller Coaster of Genuine Faith

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Riding the Roller Coaster of Genuine Faith Psalm 42:1-11 Why am I discouraged?      Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God!      I will praise him again–      my Savior and my God! Psalm […]

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? One Jewish Perspective, Part 3

posted by Mark D. Roberts

The Perspective of Jewish Leaders in Jerusalem Although the majority of Jews in Jerusalem may not have wanted Jesus to die, or may have had no opinion either way, some of the most influential Jews did see Jesus’ death as […]

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? One Jewish Perspective, Part 2

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Why “One” Jewish Perspective?As a young Christian, I had a clear picture of what happened to Jesus in the last week of his life. This picture resulted from my knowledge of the Gospels, and, to a great extent, from images […]

In Honor of St. Patrick

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In Honor of St. Patrick READ Genesis 50:14-23 “You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.” Genesis 50:20 Today is St. […]

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? One Jewish Perspective, Part 1

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Placing This Conversation in Context Before I proceed to discuss one Jewish perspective on the necessity of Jesus’ death, I must say a bit about the contemporary context for this conversation. For centuries, many Christians hated Jews. Part of the […]

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? The Roman Perspective, Part 6

posted by Mark D. Roberts

If you would like to read this whole series up to this point in logical/chronological order, visit this link:Why Did Jesus Have to Die?Roman, Jewish, and Christian Perspectives In my last post I began to describe Pontius Pilate’s predicament on […]

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? The Roman Perspective, Part 5

posted by Mark D. Roberts

If you would like to read this whole series up to this point in logical/chronological order, visit this link:Why Did Jesus Have to Die?Roman, Jewish, and Christian Perspectives In my last two posts in this series on the death of […]

Sunday Inspiration from The High Calling: Waiting Patiently for God?

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Waiting Patiently for God? Psalm 40:1-17 I waited patiently for the LORD to help me,      and he turned to me and heard my cry. Psalm 40:1 When I first read Psalm 40:1, I was immediately reminded of how hard […]

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? The Roman Perspective, Part 4

posted by Mark D. Roberts

As I explained in my last post, Pontius Pilate, the prefect of Judea during the time of Jesus, governed his territory from Caesarea, a city on the Mediterranean sea about 75 miles northwest of Jerusalem. Immediate authority over Jerusalem itself […]

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? The Roman Perspective, Part 3

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Introduction to Pontius Pilate If we’re going to understand the Roman perspective on the death of Jesus, we need to know something of the Roman man who was legally responsible for his crucifixion: Pontius Pilate. Traditionally, Pilate has been seen […]

Do You Have to Give Up Something for Lent?

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Do You Have to Give Up Something for Lent? I grew up hearing about Catholics who had to fast during the season of Lent. No meat on Fridays, only fish. This, you must understand, was a costly sacrifice in the […]

How Lent Can Make a Difference in Your Relationship with God

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Introduction to Lent Growing up as an evangelical Christian, I experienced Lent as little more than a joke. “What are you giving up for Lent?” my friends would ask. “Homework,” I’d say with a smirk, or “Obeying my parents.” Lent […]

Ash Wednesday: Practice and Meaning

posted by Mark D. Roberts

What is Ash Wednesday? What is Ash Wednesday? For most of my life, I didn’t ask this question, nor did I care about the answer. I, along, with most evangelical Christians in America, didn’t give Ash Wednesday a thought. But […]

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? The Roman Perspective, Part 2

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In my last post I began to examine the Roman practice of crucifixion, arguing that if we want to understand why a Roman governor had Jesus crucified, we should first understand why Rome used crucifixion in general. What we discovered […]

Sunday Inspiration from The High Calling: God Knows Everything You Long For

posted by Mark D. Roberts

God Knows Everything You Long For Psalm 38:1-22 You know what I long for, Lord;      you hear my every sigh. Psalm 38:9 Psalm 38 was written in a time of deep anguish and exhaustion. David was physically ill, believing […]

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? The Roman Perspective, Part 1

posted by Mark D. Roberts

The fact that Jesus was crucified rather than stoned, hanged, or killed in some other way means that the Romans were ultimately responsible for his death. Of course this is clear in the biblical gospels. But even if we lacked […]

Where Do We Start When Considering the Death of Jesus? Some Basic Facts

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Where should we start in our effort to discover why Jesus had to die? I propose to begin with some basic historical facts, facts that are affirmed by almost every historian and biblical scholar, even those who approach this question […]

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? Introduction

posted by Mark D. Roberts

As we approach the season of Lent, and then Holy Week and Easter, I propose to consider the question: “Why did Jesus have to die?” At the outset, I must say that this isn’t an easy question to answer for […]

Unbroken: The Shocking Story of the Happiest Man I’ve Ever Known

posted by Mark D. Roberts

No, I’m not exaggerating. If you were to ask me, “Who is the happiest man you’ve every known?” I would quite quickly answer, “Louie Zamperini.” As a boy, I attended the First Presbyterian Church of Hollywood. Every now and then, […]

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Thank you for visiting Mark D. Roberts. This blog is no longer being updated. Please enjoy the archives. Here are some other blogs you may also enjoy: Red Letters with Tom Davis Recent prayer post on Prayables Most Recent Inspiration ...

posted 2:09:11pm Aug. 27, 2012 | read full post »

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? Conclusions
In this series on the death of Jesus, I have presented four different perspectives on why Jesus had to die: Roman, Jewish, Jesus’, and Early Christian. I believe that each of these points of view has merit, and that we cannot fully understand ...

posted 2:47:39am Apr. 11, 2011 | read full post »

Sunday Inspiration from the High Calling
Can We Find God in the City? Psalm 48:1-14 Go, inspect the city of Jerusalem. Walk around and count the many towers. Take note of the fortified walls, and tour all the citadels, that you may describe them to future generations. For that ...

posted 2:05:51am Apr. 10, 2011 | read full post »

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? The Perspective of the First Christians, Part 3
An Act and Symbol of Love Perhaps one of the most startling of the early Christian interpretations of the cross was that it was all about love. It’s easy in our day, when crosses are religious symbols, attractive ornaments, and trendy ...

posted 2:41:47am Apr. 08, 2011 | read full post »

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? The Perspective of the First Christians, Part 2
The Means of Reconciliation In my last post, I examined one of the very earliest Christian statements of the purpose of Jesus’ death. According to the tradition encapsulated in 1 Corinthians 15, Jesus died “for our sins in accordance with ...

posted 2:30:03am Apr. 07, 2011 | read full post »

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