Times of distress are the times we tend to look outside our immediate life circles and get a glimpse of the bigger picture. On a daily basis we tend to get caught in our routines, our accomplishments and our status. We strive on placing ourselves on as high a pinnacle as possible. For most of us, our goal is to have a title, a name, prestige and property. We like to be looked up to. The problem is not that we want these things or that we acquire them. It is placing them as our highest priority that is the problem.
In times when we are in our scariest moments and suddenly stripped from our titles, properties and possessions that we realize none of it really matters. It is when that diagnosis is given to us, when that child we so desperately want is lost, when our love ones are on the death-bed and we can’t buy or provide for their healing, or when we have lost what we have worked for so hard.
It is at those final moments when we hang between life and death that we suddenly realize there was something greater than all of this. Often we think of our Spirituality then. Trust me. I have been an ICU nurse and a hospice nurse and have seen this fate too often. We look at our Spirituality because that is what is left to us. Why do we have to wait till then? Why not imagine we are at these end of the road places and we need to be prepared for what comes?
Do we read our instructions on how to use the four-wheel drive in our cars while driving during the time the roads are so Icy and bad that we can potentially be involved in an accident? Do we read the parachute’s instructions as we are falling from a plane? learn to use the fire extinguisher as the house is on fire? You get my point.
The bible is our road to our understanding not only of who we are physically but spiritually as well. The Crucifixion is a focal point for our existence. It is a point that was referred to throughout scriptures. Jesus on the Villa Dolorosa took a cross that did not belong to Him but belonged to all of us. It belonged to you and me.
I often think what would have been my role if I had been there? What is my role now in reference to Jesus? Do I crucify, ignore, reject, or mock Him such as they did on that day? They took Him to a place called the skull. Do you know that there are references dating 386 AD from a man named St Jerome that this is the place that the first man named Adam was buried?
According to his writings and those of another man named Origen, the skull of Adam was on that place and that is why this place was called Golgotha which means “The Skull” According to their writings, the blood of Christ was to fall on the skull of Adam as a symbol of the rebirth of man. Our redemption was our Father’s plan and it was revealed throughout the scriptures from the beginning.
Nothing has been a coincidence and nothing has been hidden from us. On that famous day when the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords was being mocked, humiliated, pierced, injured physically and verbally, and as they divided up His clothing, He felt pain over us! None of the events on that day were coincidental. They were all in the scriptures .
Psalm 22:16-18 says: For dogs have surrounded me; a band of evildoers has encompassed me; They pierced my hands and my feet. I can count all my bones. They look, they stare at me; They divide my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots.
He was among criminals yet, He committed no crime and He felt sorry for us! He asked The Father: “Father, forgive them for they do not know what they are doing” Isaiah 53:12 Living Bible (TLB)Therefore, I will give Him the honors of one who is mighty and great because he has poured out his soul unto death. He was counted as a sinner, and he bore the sins of many, and He pled with God for sinners.
The prophets had spoken! Yes dear friends! Those who crucified Him had scriptures as we do! Those scriptures spoke of Him and what we would do to Him! They said such things as Isaiah 53:8 – “From prison and trial they led Him away to His death. But who among the people realized that He was dying for their sins – that He was suffering their punishment?”(TLB)
Isaiah 53:10-11 – “But it was the Lord’s good plan to crush Him and fill Him with grief. Yet when His life is made an offering for sin, He will have a multitude of children, many heirs. He will enjoy a long life, and the Lord’s plan will prosper in His hands. When He sees all that is accomplished by His anguish, He will be satisfied. And because of what He has experienced, My Righteous Servant will make it possible for many to be counted righteous, for He will bear all their sins.”
Isaiah 53:9 – “He had done no wrong, and He never deceived anyone. But He was buried like a criminal; He was put in a rich man’s grave.” Zechariah 12:10 Living Bible (TLB)
“Then I will pour out the spirit of grace and prayer on all the people of Jerusalem. They will look on him they pierced, and mourn for Him as for an only son, and grieve bitterly for Him as for an oldest child who died.
Friends, All will worship Him one day Psalm 22:27-31 All the ends of the earth will remember and turn to the Lord, And all the families of the nations will worship before You. For the kingdom is the Lord’s And He rules over the nations. All the prosperous of the earth will eat and worship, All those who go down to the dust will bow before Him, Even he who cannot keep his soul alive. Posterity will serve Him; It will be told of the Lord to the coming generation. They will come and will declare His righteousness to a people who will be born, that He has performed
He told us who He is and He told us what really matters. In John 14:6 He said:
“I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me. He also said in John 8:12 “I am the Light of the world. So if you follow me, you won’t be stumbling through the darkness, for living light will flood your path.”
As He was tortured He said “Father forgive them for they do not know what they are doing” Friends, two thousand years later and having been aware of the Scriptures and what Jesus means to us can we rely on such prayer? “Father forgive us for we do not know what we are doing?” My bet is we should not rely on that.
My understanding is that Jesus expects us to follow Him and get to know Him. How? Read the scriptures as if your life depended on it because it really does. As if you were stripped of everything and nothing else mattered because in the end it really doesn’t. Pray and ask God for wisdom and He will give it to you. So that knowing the truth, we shall be set free!