Blood and Guts - The
Background of Jesus' DeathGod sent his son, whom we call Jesus. Jesus taught love, in the open square, under no pretense of governmental power or desire for it. Sensing his power, and out of jealousy for that power, mobs rose against him. Jesus' death is ironical; he died for a power that He hoped to give away freely.
He eventually expired. Nails were driven through his flesh and bone, affixing him to a Roman implement created to assure a vicious and cruel death for its passenger.
Background of ManWe are clearly placed above any creatures known to us, as if humans were somehow gods lording our ability to create and destroy. If you don't believe that, just look at that sheep cloned IN THE
Unknown craziness must assuredly have already taken place given mankind's creativity and drive. Who could even imagine what actual, real life tests may have occurred, with animals, and maybe humans, or the dead, or who knows what.
Don't worry about all that though. We can think we're gods and start a race of techno-bred babies that resist death; but in the end people will likely choose to stay mostly organic - new limbs and bodily features are here already. But like my wife's ketchup, there are just some things that need to be Sunday-certified* to not have pesticides in them, and I believe that a fetus will trend as one of those things that humanity strives to keep organic. Let's hope.
Gettin' Busy at 90I was stunned once in college when i read (in a textbook on life) that adults engage in "adult behavior" (as long as a willing partner is available) all the way to death!
But where the spirit is willing the flesh is weak, no? Surely at some point, willing or not, we may not be able to...touch our toes, or brush our own teeth, or play silly with the wife of our youth, no?
I see you smiling thinking, where there is a will there is a way, Jay! It's business time! But follow my dogleg approach one paragraph further, and I'll recap what really matters.
The DeathLet's face it, Jesus' death wasn't just a death; the death of Christ, this death was the only death that mattered.
This death kicked off a process where, in the future, people will look back and only talk about His death as if there had never been any other deaths. Or not, but history shows us the incontrovertible evidence that this death was highly gruesome; and that's the tip of the point that we're moving towards in this discourse.
Exercising His WillGod exercised His will by sending a perfect being to the Earth. Jesus exercised God's will by loving on people. Jesus was undoubtedly a picture of energy, and goodwill, and peacefulness.
What is more peaceful than a smile? Even a gruesome picture is softened by the sight of a smiling guy (see below).
Jesus would bounce children on his knee, and jump in the water with the fishermen. He was energetic. I bet fish were crazy when He would come around.
Imagine how a dog's will is somehow altered easily by the coaxings or screamings of a human counterpart. Dogs sense our power.
Fish must have been literally shooting up out of the water, and/or running aground following him (or running from him), they probably even had a few heart attacks in the older fish.
No wonder the fishermen followed Jesus, His power was never more obvious than near water, where animal life doesn't obey Human boundaries as well was on land.
The SmileWe are given in Isaiah a reference that Jesus has "no form or comeliness" that we should be attracted to Him. He may not have been attractive, but even a bloody face that smiles is attractive (see below).
When Stephen was martyred, Acts says he was peaceful as he was being murdered by the mob. Stephen gestured, pointing out angels that he could see coming and going into the open, third Heaven.
Just as Stephen but with a gushing spirit of love, Jesus was terribly peaceful during the hours, and hours, and hours that He was tortured and crucified.
Jesus was terribly peaceful while bits of his body were being torn away.
He smiled and was in waking prayer for those that tortured him. How angry must it have made the guards that they could not hurt him as easily as other victims.
How angry they must have been that he would smile back as they punished Him. How infuriating that a victim would be praying for the guards' families...perhaps just loud enough that their consciousnesses absorbed the goodwill as their evil blows landed.
"What are you?", the guards thought as they enjoyed an unusually long episode of spilling blood in order to make a show of Roman power.
But you still have to think, especially after seeing the historically accurate, vivid, and violent lashings of Christ with sharp, metal, Roman tactical implements...how strong was he to stay conscious after even one strike of such a weapon?
Our family has a story that I take a lot of laughter about. I was attempting to stay calm and relaxed while having a toenail cut. Look, it was not my fault I passed out. I simply reached a level of pain where the body released the magic that allowed me rest. I didn't scream or jump around; I just went to sleep involuntarily. How did Jesus maintain such a ripping and violently gruesome lashing?
With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible
Altar CallIt's go time.
We can choose to love the money from our meaningless toils. In fact, I personally fight that daily. We can say, "Thank you Jesus for the food on our table", and put Him back in our pocket with our health, fire, and flood insurance policies. The Lord knows that I'm guilty of this, if occasionally.
Or: we can choose to step up the plate: One More Time.
We can choose to have a will over our spirit and join with our wife one more time even if the youngsters roll their eyes or say Sarah is barren, you old fool.
We can learn to fight and push our bodies to amazing feats and become fatally powerful engines of pain in ultimate fighting or some other physically tasking venture, if led that direction by the Holy Spirit.
We use every difficulty and good in our lives to look to Jesus and request peace for the situation and guidance for the future. Ours is easy: I along with every member of my family, when left with any choice, seek Jesus' will for us. Why?
He don't quit, you can't put Him down (again), and my name is in His book.
Look what He's done for me, and for what in return? Be like this guy...
If it is disagreeable in your sight to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves today whom you will serve: whether the gods which your fathers served which were beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.
*Sunday-certified... you know, like certified by somebody but none of us really know who it is that does the certifying because we can't see them, but you know, we "believe" they're their taking care of us, right?
Last Updated: 2014-08-06 10:12:48