What was judged on the cross? I’ve heard some odd teachings on this, especially about Jesus being lifted up.

John 3:13 And, no one, hath ascended into heaven, save he that, out of heaven, descended, – The Son of Man. 14 And, just as, Moses, lifted up the serpent in the desert, so, must, the Son of Man, be lifted up, – 15 That, whosoever believeth in him, may have life age-abiding. 16 For God, so loved, the world, that, his Only Begotten Son, he gave, – that, whosoever believeth on him, might not perish, but have life age-abiding. 17 For God, sent not, his Son into the world, that he might judge the world, but, that the world might be saved through him. 18 He that believeth on him, is not to be judged: he that believeth not, already, hath been judged, – because he hath not believed on the name of the Only Begotten Son of God. 19 And, this, is the judgment: That, the light, hath come into the world, – and men loved, rather the darkness than the light, for, wicked, were their, works. 20 For, whosoever doth practise corrupt things, hateth the light, and cometh not unto the light, lest his works should be reproved; 21 But, he that doeth the truth, cometh unto the light, that his works may be, made manifest, that, in God, have they been wrought. (The J.B. Rotherham Emphasized Bible)

John 12:31 Now, is there, a judging, of this world, – Now, the ruler of this world, shall be cast out; 32 And, I, if I be lifted up out of the earth, will draw, all, unto myself. 33 But, this, he was saying, signifying, by what manner of death, he was about to die. 34 The multitude, therefore, answered him – We, have heard, out of the law, that, the Christ, abideth evermore; How then dost, thou, say, – It behoveth the Son of Man to be lifted up? Who is this Son of Man? 35 Jesus, therefore, said unto them – Yet a little while, the light, is, among you: Walk, while ye have, the light, lest, darkness, on you should lay hold; and, he that walketh in darkness, knoweth not whither he drifteth. 36 While, the light, ye have, believe on the light, that, sons of light, ye may become. These things, spake Jesus, – and, departing, was hid from them. (The J.B. Rotherham Emphasized Bible)

Some are saying that it is judgment Jesus drew, not men (the word “men” is not in the Greek). I’m not so sure this is a good understanding.

[Numbers 21:8 And the LORD said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live. 9 And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived. ~The J.B. Rotherham Emphasized Bible]

The serpent is considered to represent eternal life, or even resurrection. They looked because they believed they would not die. We look to Jesus and his finished work. But the lifting up probably refers to his ascension. Some say it is Jesus lifted up on the cross, but we don’t see him there today.

Only if we see God as angry and full of wrath, needing to punish sin, can we see Jesus as drawing all judgment to himself. But this idea does not harmonize with the teaching of the New Testament. In context, the judgment would seem to be on the ruler of this world – which we understand to be Satan and whose works Jesus came to destroy.

John 16:7 But, I, the truth, am telling you – It is profitable for you, that, I, depart; for, if I should not depart, The Advocate, would in nowise come unto you, but, if I go, I will send him unto you. 8 And, having come, He, will reprove the world – Concerning sin, and concerning righteousness, and concerning judgment: 9 Concerning sin, indeed, because they are not believing on me; 10 But, concerning righteousness, because, unto the Father, I go my way, and, no longer, do ye behold me; 11 And, concerning judgment, because, the ruler of this world, hath been judged. (The J.B. Rotherham Emphasized Bible)

No where does the New Testament speak of Jesus being judged, or receiving the wrath of God. The penalty / punishment of death was paid / taken, because Jesus was made to be frail and flawed human flesh, no longer able to live forever. He was without transgression of the law and so was the Lamb, and his death paid the penalty imposed on human beings in Eden. He did it all at once, becoming also the high priest, and so much more!

God did not abandon His son, and was never angry with those He made in His image. At the cross, Satan was judged and mankind was rescued from death. By belief in Christ, man can receive eternal life – Jesus is the true tree of life. But Jesus did not draw judgment to himself as some say. It does not fit.