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Sun Mar 09, 2014
by Mark Driscoll
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Thu Mar 06, 2014
by Bubba Jennings
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Thu Mar 06, 2014
by Dave Bruskas
Why Jesus Had to Die, Part 2
Can you remember the most painful moment of your life?
There are different types of pain. There is physical pain. Perhaps you’ve had a horrible fall and broke an arm or a leg, or worse. It’s an interesting thing how the human body will sort of “shut down” temporarily when it’s in a state of shock, so that it doesn’t feel the pain as severely.
But there are other kinds of pain that can actually be worse than physical pain: the pain of rejection, betrayal, or abandonment, for example. When a husband says to his wife, “I’ve been unfaithful to you.” When a wife says to her husband, “I want a divorce!” When the child says to the parent, “I don’t want to live the Christian life.” Or when you are betrayed by a friend, perhaps someone you’ve done so much for. It cuts like a knife.
Hebrews 12:3 says, “Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted.” To consider means “to think over, ponder, or compare.” So let’s consider what the cross was to Jesus himself. For Jesus, the cross was a fate worse than death. Indeed it was death, and a very cruel one at that. It can’t get much worse than that, but for Jesus it was.
Jesus’ lowest moment was our highest.
When we think about the most painful moment in the earthly life of Christ, our minds immediately race to the act of crucifixion itself—the crude spikes that were driven through his hands and feet, the cruel lashes on his back, or the physical abuse he took from the soldiers. All of that was truly horrific.
But as horrible as that was, I believe that none of those things was Jesus’ most painful moment—the most painful moment for Jesus was when he bore the sin of the world. This is what he recoiled from in Gethsemane, this “cup” of God’s wrath. Understand that he had never spent a single moment out of fellowship with his Father. Now he would, for a time, be completely separated from God.
And that separation, for Jesus, was a fate worse than death. This, his worst moment of personal pain and anguish, was our greatest moment in its effect. His lowest moment was our highest.
Through his pain, we gained our lives.
Read Part 1 from earlier this summer here.
This post originally appeared on Greg Laurie’s site. Greg will be speaking at our 2012 Resurgence Conference in Irvine next month. Sign up now to see Pastor Greg, Rick Warren, Mark Driscoll, and more.