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When Jesus was on the Cross and called out Eli meaning God, why did the bystanders think he was calling Elijah?


Matthew 27:46 - 47

ESV - 46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, "Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?" that is, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? 47 And some of the bystanders, hearing it, said, "This man is calling Elijah.

Clarify Share Report Asked February 27 2014 Mini Anonymous

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Stringio Vin Smith Concert Pianist. Piano Tuner. Talk Show Host. Novelist.
...The name Elijah literally means "My god is Yahweh." We must understand that the Pharisees were not irreligious. Their problem was the PRIDE of their religion--perhaps best described as their SELF PRIDE in being arbiters of their religious heritage. 

So they would have been well versed in God's prophet, Elijah. As a prophet, Elijah performed astounding miracles through the power of God. The unbelieving bystanders refused to recognize Jesus as the Messiah. Many taunted our Savior. Some were saying, "...save Yourself by coming down from the cross!" (Mark 15:30) Holman Christian Standard Bible

Soaked in unbelief from head to toe, what we might today call a tone deaf throng, these unbelievers never would have understood that Jesus was beseeching his Father, "...My god, my God, why have you forsaken me?" A son asking his Father with total humility. Yet, Jesus had already assured His Father that the Father's will be done. 

This unbelieving throng! One wonders how many with hardened hearts rethought their unbelief! The Scripture continues: "And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split. The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many." (Matthew 27: 51-53) ESV

February 27 2014 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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