Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Cross Speaks Part 2

Today I promise it will be two points. NOT three. :) Yesterday I fully intended to just do two, but got carried away since the house was so quiet! (Chad and the girls were at karate.)

Today, I have sat outside and been going over notes to lead Bible study Thursday evening. It's the fourth week of Kelly Minter's Ruth study. During this week, Ruth heads to the threshing floor. Alone.

Ruth is living on the extreme edge of faith. She is a foreigner, a widow and is now taking a journey that is full of unknowns. She is told to go to a place that is scandalous, just plain scandalous. It is one night that if I had been in her shoes, I would NOT have slept much. It would be a night of prayer and pleading with God to intervene. She is on a journey that only she and God can take.

That leads me to the next point from Sunday.

4. A Word of Isolation Matthew 27:46 About the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, "Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthanci?" which means My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?

We know that the evening before Jesus was crucified, he spent the night praying. He asked God if there was any other way. But there wasn't. Jesus was obedient even to the death out of love for you and I but more importantly, out of obedience and love for God the Father. He was rejected by those closest to Him. He was beaten beyond recognition and because of my sin, God the Father had to turn His back on His only Son. Even with a crowd of on-lookers, He felt forgotten. Isolated.

We can surround ourselves with people, have 1000 Facebook friends or twitter followers but nothing and no one can fill the God size hole in our hearts. Once you know Him and enter relationship with Him, you realize you can't live without Him. Jesus had always been in fellowship with the Father. Forever and ever! I wonder if these moments of isolation from God the Father were just as painful if not more than the physical pain He was enduring.

5. A Word of Identification. John 19:28 Later, knowing that all was now completed, and so that the Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, "I am thirsty."

Two things are huge to me here. First, the fact that at the point of death, Jesus was still about God's plan. (So that the Scripture would be fulfilled...) THAT my friend speaks volumes to me about obedience.

The second thing is what my pastor said. We see in this statement the humanness of Jesus. He really was God wrapped in flesh. He was thirsty. He was in pain. For you and me. This was hard. Much harder than we comprehend.

As our pastor made this point Sunday I was reminded of the illustration Beth Moore gave us about a year or so ago on her blog. The time when she and Melissa were sitting in a waiting room waiting on Beth's turn for a test. Melissa had flipped through the MANY brochures describing all sorts of medical issues when she looked at her mom and said, "He knows it's hard to be us."

He knows it's hard. Jesus "gets" pain. He knows heartache. He knows rejection. There is nothing I can go through that He can not identify with.

Isaiah 53:3 He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not

What a Savior we have.