crwon-love of God

Read John 18

You know the story, we have all read it, heard it told, watched it on the big screen

It is always heart wrenching, profound and life changing.

It is difficult to behold, understand and accept.

The Creator of the Universe, the One who spoke the stars in to being,

is accused and condemned to die, the most violent of deaths.

It has been called:

The Greatest Story Ever Told.

I remember the first time I heard how crucifixion is done.  I had known of and thought about the spiritual agony for Jesus being separated from God the Father as He bore the weight of our sin- incomprehensible to me.    But that He would choose to endure the physical agony as well, undid me.  I can understand physical pain.  And this form of death, mastered and perfected by the Romans, was excruciating.   

Jesus chose His path… “I am He, the One you seek, He told the guards who had come to arrest Him.”

Jesus endured horrific physical pain and agony for us in the scourging and crucifixion.

Scourging was a specific type of whipping designed to leave the victim bloody, weak in unimaginable pain and close to the point of death.  It was required punishment for a convicted criminal.

Jesus was tied to a post, stripped to only a loin cloth and given 39 lashes, because 40 were said to kill a man.

39 lashes with a whip, called a cat of nine tails.  a multi-layered whip usually divided into  3 section, with lead ball or pieces of bone braided in.  This whip was intended to rip the skin off a criminal. 

Jesus knew the physical agony he would endure, as He prayed in the Garden for this cup to pass. He spoke of it to His disciples…

I am He, the One you seek, He said and went willingly…

How did he have the courage to go through this? 

We say, because He loves us” 

True.

     Costly love. 

            Beyond our comprehension.

His love for us, His love for The Father, and His obedience were costly.

The story continues…

After the scourging, Jesus had to carry His cross up to Golgotha.  Beaten, bloody, broken He continued forward on the Calvary Road.  Mocked, spit on, ridiculed… He took one step then another toward His crucifixion, dragging the 75-125 lb crossbeam upon which He would die.

Intentional

Committed

Surrendered to the will of His Father

Describing the crucifixion is difficult.  Watching to movie “The Passion of Christ” was grueling as I imagined Jesus enduring this. 

Crucifixion is brutal. A slow, tortuous way to die; hanging until the body suffocated or went into heart failure.  Sometimes the criminal’s legs were broken to hasten the process.

There was block of wood by the criminal’s feet; they would push themselves up to take a breath before their body slouched again the weight being held by nails suspended hands and arms.  Eventually being too weak to continue, or due to broken legs, the criminal would die by suffocating.

Jesus was nailed to the cross, willingly…

He hung there, weak, beaten, bloody, in physical and spiritual anguish as He took upon Himself the punishment for the sins of the world…

     your sin

          my sin.

In a moment of unimaginable soulish agony, Jesus experienced utter separation from God the Father

a rending of an eternal relationship

       death of His body with no hope of eternity.

           taking upon Himself the punishment we deserve for our sins

Jesus, perfect and without sin

endured…for you, for me, for all of us.

“It is finished” He said…

and He died.

So we would never have to experience death without the hope of eternity with God.

So we will never experience the utter desolation of having The Father turn His face from us and be utterly separated from Him

So we might live with Him as brothers and sisters forever.

Incomprehensible love.

Amazing Love  (listen and watch you tube video)

 

Digging Deeper:

As you reflect on this sacred day, take some time to:

  • Read the different accounts in the gospels:

Matthew 26 & 27, Mark 14 & 15; Luke 22 & 23; John 18

What stands out to you in each telling?  what moves you, touches you, haunts you..

  • Listen to the following songs that try to express the inexpressible.

When I Survey the Wondrous Cross

Nothing But the Blood

Were You There? (When They Crucified My Lord)

 

Daily Lectionary Readings: 

Isaiah 52:13-53; Psalm 31:2, 6,12-13, 15-17, 25; Hebrews 4:14-16, 5:7-9; John 18

If you want to read through the New Testament during Lent (about 1/2 hour a day)

Read on Day 45: Revelation 8-16

2 Responses to “Day 45- Holy Week- Good Friday”

  1. Jean Albert

    Susie, thank you for helping me to walk through Lent guided and inspired by your thoughts and your writings. You continued to what you had committed despite the physical pain and sickness….you did not let the devil win. God bless you immensely.

    Reply
  2. Stacey Bartholomew

    Powerful and moving blog and reflections. Thank you also for sharing the Amazing Love video.

    Reply

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