“Jesus’ death . . . is not a fateful fatality like the image of the automobile accident. It does not serve to show how humans, in spite of all their passion for life, can be wiped out in a moment’s notice. By his death Jesus does not represent the enormity of the power of death. On the contrary, he chooses to die. He lays down his life freely and deliberately, and he does so in accord with God’s own will. Jesus’ death is just the opposite of an unexpected, unforeseen auto accident. For the New Testament there is absolutely nothing accidental at all about Jesus’ death. It belongs to his conscious purpose; it is grounded in God’s loving will. Far from proclaiming the mutilating power of death (as does a nuclear bomb), Jesus’ death takes death out of the demonic and makes it an event informed by the free decision of this man and by the graciousness of this God.” [italics mine] (Arthur McGill, “Death and Life,” 46)

. . . For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life that I may take it up again. 18. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This charge I have received from my Father. ~ John 10:17,18 (ESV)

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