Just before he gave up his spirit, “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’”

Someone once said that the biggest little word in the dictionary is “Why?”

We are tempted a thousand times to ask “Why?” when heartache and disaster strike. But just as the seven lean cattle in Pharaoh’s dream swallowed up the seven fat cows, so the “Why?” of the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross swallows up all our other whys. The verse immediately before His cry tells us that the whole land turned dark. This curtain of darkness, symbolic of all the sin, judgment, sadness, evil, pain, misery, etc, had been placed upon Christ on the cross. It says, “Darkness was over the entire land.” It’s the darkness that was upon the face of the deep in Genesis 1:2, “Darkness was over the face of the deep.” No one has experienced the depths of suffering as that of Christ on the cross. Our sin broke his intimacy with the Father! This alienation was probably the worst part of the “darkness.”

The passion in this cry might be missed unless we understand that in Hebrew the repetition of the name is the deepest expression of intimacy. Though we have the book of Matthew in Greek, God preserved for us the Hebrew phrase, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” When God speaks to stop Abraham from killing Isaac on Mt. Moriah, he says, “Abraham, Abraham.” When God speaks to Jacob to encourage him to move to Egypt he says, “Jacob, Jacob.” God called to Moses, “Moses, Moses.” He called “Samuel, Samuel.” David cried out in pain over the death of his son, “Absalom, Absalom.” When Jesus confronted Martha, when he warned Peter, when He wept over Jerusalem, in each case he repeated the name.

Some pretend to have a deep relationship with Christ, but this claim is not borne out in their lives. There are many who say, “Lord, Lord,” while in fact they live in contempt for Christ’s commandments. “If you love me, you will obey what I command,” said Jesus.

“Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you?” Luke 6:46