And you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross. (Acts 2:23)

I HAD JUST FINISHED TEACHING a Bible lesson to a group of pastors in a South Asian country. We opened the floor for questions, and one pastor asked, “Who killed Jesus?”

I’m sure they expected me to answer, “The Jews killed Him,” or “The Romans killed Him,” or perhaps both. But just before I answered, another thought occurred to me, a thought that touched me deeply. I paused and said, “I did. I killed Jesus.”

My interpreter didn’t say anything. He turned and looked at me, then slowly he began to translate what I had said. I continued, “My sins nailed Him to the cross.”

Later, the interpreter said, “When you said you killed Jesus, I did not want to translate this thing. Then I turned and looked at you, saw the tears in your eyes, and I knew what you meant.”

All of us could answer the same way. It’s a horrible thought and a wonderful thought, all at the same time. Horatio Spafford wrote, “My sin—oh, the bliss of this glorious thought—my sin, not in part, but the whole, is nailed to the cross and I bear it no more. Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord, O my soul!”

Rough Roman soldiers forced Jesus onto the cross and drove cruel spikes through His hands and feet, but your sins and mine put Him there.

Live today in the glorious freedom purchased by His death on the cross for you.

Ron McClung works at his denomination’s world headquarters and lives in Indiana with his wife, Carol. They have two sons and nine grandchildren.