The Crucifixion and the Forsaken Jesus

by Joshua Tilghman on March 31, 2013

the crucifixionFor theologians, the crucifixion of Jesus has been regarded as a monumental turning point in the history of mankind. Those famous words from Christ, “It is finished,” have represented the completion of God’s unmerited grace poured out for humanity through the death of his Son. This has always been the exoteric view, but what does the crucifixion mean esoterically? Is it possible that the church missed something of great importance because it failed to interpret the deeper meaning of the text? The answer of course is yes, and today we’ll uncover the highest meaning of the crucifixion.

Side note: If this is your first time here, you might want to read the first two posts in this series which discuss the esoteric Jesus through his coming out of Egypt, his baptism, and the Transfiguration.

We can discover the esoteric Jesus and true meaning behind the crucifixion through a mysterious statement that Christ he made at the 9th hour. I quote from Matthew 27:46:

“And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? That is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”

I don’t know about you, but that phrase always used to bother me. Why would God forsake his own son, especially after going through all that suffering? I remember sitting in the pew Easter service and hearing the pastor gloss over that statement like it wasn’t even in the Bible. When I began researching and questioning the true meaning for this statement, I got the usual unsatisfactory reply: Jesus said that because he took all the sin of the world upon himself, and he had to be separated from God at that moment because God can’t look upon sin.

So…God could be reunited with him only after the sin of the world killed his flesh? Um, sorry, that didn’t cut it for me. The truth is that this answer (and many others like it) was simply a vein attempt to satisfy a scripture exoterically that in truth can only be satisfied esoterically. This is because the scriptures are esoteric in nature. However there is some truth to this answer when we see it as a process that happens within us, where Jesus said the Kingdom of God resided. In order to see how the crucifixion is really about a process in the heart of man let’s start with Gaskell’s definition for the number nine:

Nine, number: The number three is the number of perfection and completeness. Nine, which is three squared, refers to the attainment of perfection on the three lower planes [material plane, astral and mental planes].

The above defines why Matthew 27:46 starts out with about the ninth hour. It was about the ninth hour because Jesus’ soul was about to become perfect through the death of his lower nature. Now let’s look at Gaskell’s definition for the crucifixion itself:

Crucifixion of Jesus, according to the Canonical Gospel’s: A symbol of the final anguish of the incarnate Soul as it reaches perfection, and the lower nature drops away from it.

Now Jesus’ statement about God forsaking him is starting to make some sense! The ego, which represents the passions and desires of the lower man, truly feels forsaken as its dissolution and death. Of course it’s going to cry out that it is being forsaken. We ourselves do this every time we feel like we aren’t getting the attention we feel that we deserve!

A couple of people have asked me recently why the Bible depicts the ego as being crucified since crucifixion paints such a barbaric image. The reason crucifixion imagery fits so well is because when the lower self is extinguished it truly can be a painful and agonizing experience, at least at first. The bliss described by many gurus after union with the higher self is achieved makes the entire process seem worth it.

Consider the fact that so many people have had an “awakening” under circumstances of extreme distress. Many take place during a near-death experience. Everything from car wrecks, extreme physical illness, and even serious depression can help the soul make the transition.

Jesus made the statement “My God, my god, why hast thou forsaken me” then not because an outside source like God had to turn his head, but because the entire scene is symbolic of the ego being put to death. It’s about a process within the individual, not something separate from ourselves, and it is painful at first because the joy of bliss one experiences after the ego has been extinguished doesn’t happen until the process is complete. Remember, when Jesus made that statement, he hadn’t died yet. Jesus of the Gospels represents the soul in a state of transition to perfection, and his final transformation happens in the resurrection and ascension.

The next few scriptures in the crucifixion scene will solidify this esoteric interpretation for you. Consider what they gave to Jesus after asking God why he had forsaken him:

“And straightway one of them ran, and took a sponge, and filled it with vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink” (Matthew 27:48).

Have you ever asked yourself why someone in the crowd would give him vinegar? Water would have been better, wouldn’t you think? The truth is that the vinegar serves as another important symbol. Gaskell states vinegar is “A symbol of the experience of suffering and sorrow.”

No elaboration needed there, but we do need still need to discuss Matthew 27:50-51:

“Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the Ghost. And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom…”

The veil is symbolic of the separation between the lower and the higher self. The temple in the verse above has nothing to do with a building. It’s the temple of the individual body. This is where the renting of the veil takes place. I have already discussed how Jesus’ death represents attaining the spiritual perfection of his personality by dropping away the lower self to achieve a union with his higher self. The ripping of the veil symbolizes this union.

It can also be said that there is no atonement for the lower self until all identification with the natural man has been severed in order for higher consciousness to be achieved. That is atonement. Remember Jacob’s ladder which is about the process of involution and evolution. The higher self lays down life in order to incarnate (involution), and then takes it up again after the ego has been crucified (evolution). It puts a whole new meaning on the crucifixion and resurrection, doesn’t it?J

Just like Jesus’ baptism and transfiguration, the crucifixion then is another universal symbol for the death of the lower self and the subsequent raising of consciousness.

In the next post we’ll finish the esoteric Jesus series with the resurrection in ascension.

Happy Easter!

{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Laurie March 31, 2013 at 9:02 pm

YES! 🙂

Happy Easter to you and yours as well. Thanks so much for taking the time to write these articles. I have enjoyed them and learned so much from them, as well as from the Comments and everyone’s feedback.


Joshua Tilghman April 2, 2013 at 7:28 pm

Thanks, Laurie. Always a pleasure to see your comments. Blessings.


motla68 April 1, 2013 at 12:33 pm

” The feast of the Resurrection of Christ derives its name from Eastre, the goddess of Spring ”

So probably more appropriate to say; Happy Resurrection Day!

Jesus is the representative of mankind, but mankind was trusting in other gods before Elohim, so it was inevitable that this had to happen rather then destroy all of mankind. It was to the advantage of jesus though, because he himself obeyed so he was given the gift of ascendtion, he did not understand it though until he experienced it.
To better understand this lets check out a legal term:

DEAD-BORN, descent, persons. Children dead-born are considered, in law, as if they had never been
conceived, [[ so that no one can claim a title ]], by descent, through such dead-born child. This is the doctrine of the civil law. Dig. 50, 16, 129. Non nasci, et natum mori, pare, sunt. Mortuus exitus, non est exitus.
Civil Code of Louis. art. 28. >> > A child in ventre sa mere is considered in being, only when it is for its
advantage, and not for the benefit of a third person. <<< The rule in the common law is, probably, the same, that a dead-born child is to be considered as if he had never been conceived or born in other words, it is presumed he never had life. it being a maxim of the common law, that mortuus exitus non est exitus. Co.
Litt. 29 b. See 2 Paige, R. 35; Domat, liv. prel. t. 2, s. 1, n. 4, 6; 4 Ves. 334.
– 1856 bouviers legal dictionary. I have done a great deal of research within the legal system as well, so it might be hard to grasp that when a entity called a person was created and held by the state the living experienced a civil death by registration and deposit of your mankind name. So then one could possible interpret that we descended from earth so that we could ascend spiritually, the path has been created, we just have to walk it without fear, this is where the faith and works comes in. Also shown in the dictionary term, nobody can own nothing. certificate is just evidence of who is holding title in public trust.

2 Peter 1:20 " Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation."

Here is a video for inspiration to how one might drop the lower self to begin ascending to the higher self;

There is 3 other videos in that series and Vic Beck has other videos out there too on youtube to continue further down the path to ascension. Enjoy!


Joshua Tilghman April 2, 2013 at 7:24 pm


As always thanks for adding such valuable links and info to the discussions for everyone. Blessings.


Laurie April 2, 2013 at 8:27 pm

Isn’t this also what we have to go through? There was a point I went to that was extremely painful. I too, called out to God. It was the point of starting to give up my Ego. I didn’t even know that’s what it was at the time. After coming out of the Church and going through a lot and feeling very alone, I came to a painful point where I said “God, if this is you (how the church world is) Then I want NOTHING to do with you”. I said a few more things as well, mainly renouncing all that I so called “Believed” and held as beliefs. I then said “But, if you are REAL, then YOU have to reteach me everything”. I didn’t want a belief system, I wanted truth.

Man, it was painful. I didn’t think anything changed in that moment. But it did. So many things started to happen that were teaching me and leading me to places that I could learn more. Instead of just blindly “believing”, there was something inside that said “Yes”. It was the start of me realizing I truly had a higher self and there really was an Ego.


scott murray April 3, 2013 at 2:54 am

In the end, even our most cherished image/thought/concept of God must be released because the Divine is not that. Perhaps this is the meaning of this passage. God only exists to us in our pictures and thoughts of Him (her, it – whatever). It is impossible to conceive of an inconceivable being (suprabeing?). When that is taken away from us, what would be left but a sense of being forsaken?


Laurie April 3, 2013 at 12:34 pm

I agree, Scott. I don’t even call “God”, God. It brings back the church and the old concept of what God is. To be honest? In my simple mind I call it “The Flow”, because it just seems to “FLOW” in everything.


Christine Hoeflich April 4, 2013 at 8:15 pm

I call God different things. Sometimes I call God “the Universe,” sometimes it’s “All That Is,” sometimes it’s “Source” or “Creation” or “the Divine” or “Divine Plan.” “Flow” is a good one too, Laurie, because once you connect with your higher self a lot more flow occurs.

Thanks for this article Josh!


Lance June 26, 2013 at 4:44 am

Hi I find your writings extremely interesting and sometime informative. However I have to say that in my humble opinion, Jesus died for us because we
we were unable to attain perfection perfection. It is wonderful though, to find that so many os us do as Jesus wanted us to do;
Ask, Seek, Knock
7 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.8 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.
9 “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! 12 So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.
Bless you and keep up you good writings.


Joshua Tilghman June 26, 2013 at 6:55 pm


I completely understand your firm belief that a literal Christ died for our sins. I certainly can’t prove that he didn’t. Nor would I want to. What matters most to me is that we grasp what he taught, whether it was one person living 2000 years ago or mystics who used other religious ideas and concepts to convey great truth. Thanks for commenting!


joseph September 29, 2013 at 5:48 pm

I really don’t understand what you are saying, that the physical Crucifixion of Jesus never occurred and that it is all totally figurative? I was literally physically sick when I was reading this. Please tell me that you are not leading people to believe this.


Joshua Tilghman October 5, 2013 at 1:14 pm


Why did this make you physically sick? Isn’t this just your mind playing tricks? It’s dangerous to get so entrenched in an idea that anything which counters it makes you feel that way.

I am not being critical, just honest. The ego is a powerful thing. I understand where you are coming from because I use to feel the same way when I read information that contradicted what the traditional church taught. There’s more to it!
Many blessings, my friend!


Motla68 October 5, 2013 at 2:31 pm

We were not there so how can we accept the fact it happened ? only through belief by faith what we have interpreted through scripture. So then ego can be a bad thing or a good thing I think the point is;

Adding to my previous comment on this, I had also noticed something else valuable in the blog post, a literal interpretation to a symbolic action, ask any herbalist how valuable vinegar is in their practice or better yet apple cider vinegar also being that apples come from ” trees ” meantioned in the old testament as a source of health. I have done the same myself of extracting oil from reeds with apple cider vinegar for curing ailments and infusing fruits with kombucha.

So that all being said, the bible giving us all this symbolism for literal interpretations gives cause for further investigation… ” in heaven as it is on earth ” , and perhaps the earth being the ego of man called providence. To have full understanding linked between the 2 then we can begin to ascend we then see the abundance given to us through natural law clouded by so much damn commercialism.


Joshua Tilghman October 10, 2013 at 7:39 pm


Interesting that you mention kombucha. It’s a very powerful gut ailment, especially if you’ve been fed heavy antibiotics.

And I also understand what you mean by the Bible giving us symbolism for literal interpretations for further investigation. It all comes together full circle in the end, doesn’t it? Good to hear from you again! Blessings!


Lance Roberts October 11, 2013 at 6:20 am

Just a thought, Yeshua’s cry of anguish was from His ego like all of us. All our doubts come from the ego.
Simple enough don’t you think? This gives me no prLance
PS We must not let ignorant preachers put us off reading the Bible and receiving the truth.


Lance Roberts October 11, 2013 at 6:22 am

Sorry I messed up that email I am clumsy at 74 years old.


Lance Roberts October 11, 2013 at 10:00 am

Excuse errors my fingers are rather clumsy these days
Yeshua’s cry of anguish was from His ego and shows His humanity like all of us. It also known as the sting of death, in the Corinthians which gives added credibility to reincarnation in the Bible. In each re- generation or reincarnation the sting of death continues until such time as one accepts Yeshuah as Lord and Saviour. If our treasure is on earth we will be back and the sting of death awaits us. Jesus said very clearly ” Come unto me ye that have heavy Karma and I will give you rest. ( from the slavery of reincarnation.)
Bless you all for seeking the truth


Motla68 October 11, 2013 at 12:15 pm

Hey, Joshua
Good to be back for now for a bit, been working hard on some other areas of greate concern of our existence on this earth.

Lance, yes, the ego of human nature is to be left on this earth as we pass on to the next age and the treasure as I hope the rest of the biblical scholars in here will agree that it is in knowledge told by us in the new testament. Phil 3:20 home is in heaven , and if the seat of god is in the pineal gland that is where knowledge is resident as well (our treasure).

Colossians 2, Revelations 16, Luke 2 , if you read these chapters you might get the interepretation that if your dead in one law your living in the other, if we are to live in god then we are dead to man’s law (mammon) and if we are dead to god’s law then we are living through dead entities.
Which brings me to share with what I been in study of; Beginning in the 1600s the Perishes handed out Settlement Certificates to the poor, it was welfare to help settle debts for basic needs. As time progressed these settlement certificate eventually became certificates of live birth because more and more families decided not to record family births in the bible and would rather the government do it so they could get benefits, this monopolized business became more and more popular to the empires we have today. The colonies that were called Provinces became States, so then the ecclesiastical states then became corporations and the birth names became franchises. Soon people then accepted the franchises and book entries becoming their own life so they could get even more benefits, well more and more people have learned that those benefit now have some pretty stiff liabilities attached to it and the benefits are starting to dwindle and go into shareholders pockets or parts uknown such as foreigners who bring in latch babies.
We have lost our way and have became to dependent on the government franchises, we forgot the original intent of it just being welfare, something to fall back on if something goes terrible wrong in our lives and have basic needs, this was pretty apparent to me when i heard about a lady a few years back who tried to get Benevolent funds from a church to decorate her home.
So now we have governments shutting down and people searching for spiritual truth in their lives, history certainly does repeat itslef.

I am now on this mission of transforming my words into action and treating that government issued entity as nothing more then a charitable business franchise, a dead entity tool, but something I can use to help otherse find their way back to the creator. I have found it is possible to incorporate the name as such in the state and register it in the county under ficticious business names as a charity. I have already seen good things come from others who have done this and even though i have not gone through that whole process myself I have already seen some debts disappear because of treating it that way.

I hope this posting will help others as well turn lemons into lemonade as we discover the power and authority to change our manifested thoughts within us instead of some external force doing it for us through this blog and others like it.


Joshua Tilghman October 13, 2013 at 12:05 pm


Good to have you back. Sounds like you’re study some serious history. I find it very interesting the way you are going about this. I would like to hear more if you have the time. Shoot me an e-mail!


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