Saturday, August 8, 2009


I found myself in tears this morning as I read in Mark 15 the account of Jesus' crucifixion. The magnitude of what Christ suffered overwhelmed my heart as I considered the answer to Pilate's question to the crowd insisting He be crucified: "Why, what evil has He done?"


"For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us..."

This world has seen terrible suffering. People have been tortured and scourged. They've endured horrors unknown, but how many at the hands of their own creation? What Jesus must have been thinking as He was whipped and mocked, knowing the name of each of His afflicters. How He must have cringed knowing the loving way each one was fashioned by their Maker King, only to use the hands He made to beat and torture Him; using the mouth and tongue He gave to hurl insults and accusations at Him. What Jesus suffered was not impersonal, not to Him. He knew every story of every man and woman who cried out mockingly, "Let the Christ, the King of Israel, descend now from the cross, that we may see and believe." He knew every man who spat, every woman who gawked, and they were the reason He didn't come down from that cross. They were the reason He endured, He suffered, He was forsaken. And in the end, when the earth shook and the sky grew dark, when the veil was torn and a way was made, it was His accuser who proclaimed, "Truly this Man was the Son of God!" 

He still knows every story and every name. He still knows each one who rejects, curses and mocks Him. And the love that compelled Him to remain on that cross, compels Him to stay His return. It compels me to make Him known until He comes. It compels me to be the same kind of love He was; to endure whatever may come for the sake of souls He created, longs for and loves - literally to death. It compels me to give my life to see the accuser become the proclaimer; the reviler the reconciled. This life is not my own. He was God and gave His away. Why should I, as His creation expect to do less? 

"For Christ's love compels us, because we are convinced that One died for all, and therefore all died. And He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for Him who died for them and was raised again... We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us. We implore you on Christ's behalf: Be reconciled to God."