Did the Lord Jesus bear our sins only during the three hours of darkness?

Did the Lord Jesus bear our sins only during the three hours of darkness?

Mark, by inspiration, tells us that the Lord cried, "My God, My God, why didst Thou forsake Me?" (Newberry) at the ninth hour, when the darkness ended (15:33, 34). Mr. Newberry’s alteration indicates that the Lord was no longer forsaken during the remainder of His time on the cross. Coming at the close of the darkness, this question seems to imply that He was forsaken either during all the darkness or at some time during the darkness. Those three hours were a special time of God’s dealing with Him for our sins.

At least one other passage shows that His bearing our sins was not limited to those three hours. "Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree" (Galatians 3:13). 1 Peter 2:24 seems to support this view, since He bore "our sins in His own body on the tree."

In Deuteronomy 21:23, from which Paul quotes in Galatians 3, a rebellious, incorrigible son was to be stoned. Along with anyone who died because of disobedience to the law, this son’s body was to then hang on a tree, "accursed of God." The message was, "This is the drastic price of disobedience to God’s law." This was the message to Israel when God’s submissive, impeccable Son hung on a tree. No wonder they esteemed "Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted" (Isaiah 53:4)! The price was drastic, but the disobedience was theirs and by extension ours (Romans 3:19). During the first three hours God graphically displayed to man what sin cost, as Christ hung in shame, accursed of God. During the next three hours, God veiled from man the full cost of sin, for none but Divine Persons could measure such agony.

With unshod feet, we conclude that our Lord was bearing sins from the moment He was nailed to the cross until the moment He dismissed His spirit.

D. Oliver