Destined to Die
And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.
I once asked Billy Graham, "Are there any truths you find yourself emphasizing more or less now than you did when you were a younger preacher?"
Without hesitating he said, "The cross and the blood. That's where the power is."
The whole of Scripture points to the death of Jesus on the cross and His shed blood, starting with the book of Genesis. After Satan led Eve and Adam into sin, God brought His judgment upon him and said, speaking of the One that would come, "He will strike your head, and you will strike his heel" (Genesis 3:15 NLT). That is the first Messianic scripture in the Bible, the first passage that actually points to the One who would come.
In the book of Exodus when the Israelites were to take the blood of the sacrificial lamb and put it on the top and each side of their doorposts (in the very shape of a cross, interestingly) so the judgment of God would pass over them, that was pointing to the cross where Jesus' blood was to be shed.
The prophet Isaiah said of Jesus the Messiah, "But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed" (Isaiah 53:5 NLT).
In the New Testament we see it reinforced again and again that Jesus was coming to die. When He was there at the Mount of Transfiguration with Moses and Elijah, the Bible tells us that the subject of their discussion was His impending death (see Luke 9:30–31).
The crucifixion wasn't an interruption of an otherwise successful ministry; it was all part of God's plan from the beginning, to bring about the redemption of humanity. Jesus was that final sacrifice to bridge the gap.