Seeking The One Who Suffered For Me

"He suffered, died, and was buried."  After reciting these words every week in church (as a child), these words just sort of roll of my tongue.  Sometimes, even without much thought.  This morning, I'm giving it some thought.

The Son of God had been suffering for a long time when he felt the full weight of humanity's sin descend upon him.  He felt abandoned by God, and was left with a gut wrenching despair.  He tasted separation from God.  As he hung on that cross he thought of me.  He thought of my sin.  He thought of how much he loved me.  He tasted the very essence of Hell, and he did it because he loves me.  Even in that moment... in the moment of his greatest anguish...he knew and loved me. 

His suffering didn't begin when the ones he came to save ridiculed him, taunted him, humiliated him, stripped the clothes from his body and cast lots to decide who would get to keep them.

Jesus' suffering didn't begin when they lifted the cross into the vertical position and his body weight strained against the nails that had been pounded through his wrists and feet.

The Prince of Peace's suffering didn't begin when they pounded nails through his flesh to hold him on the cross once they stood it upright.  My Lord...he must have screamed terribly to feel those nails rip through is body.

The Great Healer carried his own cross to his place of execution.  Those hands had healed the blind and the sick.  They had raised the dead.  Now, they carried a cross.

His suffering didn't begin when they tied him to a post so that they could most effectively rip the skin on his back to shreds with a whip.  He knew who he was and that he could simply say "stop" and it would stop, yet he endured.  

The One who had traveled near and far to preach of God's love and mercy...His suffering didn't begin when the crowds insisted on releasing a murderer instead of him.

Can you imagine what it must have been like to KNOW precisely what was about to happen?  Can you imagine the overwhelming human instinct to do everything and anything to avoid it?  To run and hide?

Jesus knew.  He begged that there be another way.  He was on the ground with his face in the dirt... overwhelmed with sorrow.  He was praying so intensely and he was in such anguish that he literally sweat blood.

But there was no other way.  

And so it began.  Darkness was allowed to reign that night. 

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Seek The Lord Sunday Participants
1. Bethany

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Anonymous –   – (4/10/2009 09:31:00 AM)  

Great post to read on Good Friday.

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