This is the last week of Lent, also called Passion week. I have been reading and reflecting on the last days before Christ’s crucifixion.
I will be forever grateful for Christ’s willingness to go through the agony of carrying our sins (the sins of more that 6 billion people), and go through the extreme physical pain — torture of the whippings and being nailed to the cross, for going through the rejection and loneliness. When I think about the love He has for each one of us, I want to prostrate myself on the floor before Him and worship Him.
He went through all of this because we are sinful—but we can be healed and experience His immense love. We can experience His power, grace and wisdom every moment of the day and every day of the lives.
Let’s take a look at parts of verses 3 and 5 in Isaiah 53 and reflect on His suffering.
1. Verse 3, “He was hated and rejected by people”
I find it much easier to be rejected by people who don’t know me, but when I am rejected by relatives, or a friend I thought was loyal to me–that really hurts. But we know that Christ experienced this – His disciples all left Him. He too, was rejected.
2. Verse 3 “He experienced much pain and sorrow.”
I would venture to say that you have experienced some deep sorrow in your life. When, due to Lou Gehrig’s disease, I observed every muscle in my strong brother’s body deteriorate until all he could was blink his eyes–that was one of the most sorrowful things I have ever gone through. Watching him struggle to eat, trying to make us understand what he was trying to say. We saw him go from using canes, to a walker, to a scooter, to a wheelchair. That was sorrowful.
Jesus was with him every moment of every day—strengthening him and us and giving us courage. Jesus has experienced every sorrow we have and ever will go through.
3. Verse 5 “He was wounded for the wrong things WE did. He was crushed for the evil things we did. The punishment which made us well, was given to him, And we are healed because of His wounds.”
He was wounded and crushed because of our tendency to lie, deceive, hate, be jealous etc. Sins we so often rationalize, laugh about or deny. He knew what we were like, yet He loved us enough to give His life for our sins.
I read a book called, “A Boy called it”. He was abused, beaten, burned, stabbed, rejected and alienated by his alcoholic mother. Somewhere he had heard the Lord’s Prayer and one day he prayed, “Deliver me from evil”. Shortly after that his teachers reported the abuse to authorities and soon after, he was removed from the home. God hears the prayers of hurting people.
Jesus has gone through the pains we have gone through and much more. He understands and wants to help us.
Father God, you love us so much–you want us and everyone on earth to experience your love in all its fullness. Give us the grace to open our hearts and minds to let your spirit permeate every cell in our body so we can know and, experience your power and unfailing love. Fill our hearts to over flowing so we want to tell everyone out you. Amen.
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