…. they were unschooled, ordinary men …. they had been with Jesus …. the crippled man healed standing with them – Acts 4:13,14
Does God understand us when we suffer, … when life’s unfair, unjust?
Isaiah 53:3,4 (NIV)
He was despised
and rejected by mankind,
a man of suffering,
and familiar with pain.
Like one from whom people hide their faces
he was despised,
and we held him in low esteem.
4 Surely he took up our pain
and bore our suffering,
yet we considered him punished by God,
stricken by him, and afflicted.
At the end of time, billions of people were scattered on a great plain before God’s throne. Some of the groups near the front talked heatedly, not cringing with shame but with belligerence.
“How can God judge us? How can He know about suffering?” snapped a joking brunette. She jerked back a sleeve to reveal a tattooed number from a Nazi concentration camp. “We endured terror, beatings, torture, death.”
In another group, a black man lowered his collar. “What about this?” he demanded, showing an ugly rope burn. “Lynched for no crime but being black! We’ve suffocated in slave ships, been wrenched from loved ones, toiled till only death gave relief.”
Far out across the plain were hundreds of such groups. Each one had a complaint against God for the evil and suffering being permitted in this world.
How lucky God was to live in Heaven, where all was sweetness and light, where there was no weeping, no fear, no hunger, no hatred. Indeed, what did God know about what man had been forced to endure in this world? “After all, God leads a pretty sheltered life,” they said.
So each group sent out a leader, chosen because he had suffered the most. There was a Jew, a black, an untouchable from India, an illegitimate, a person from Hiroshima and one from a Siberian slave camp. In the center of the plain, they consulted with each other. At last, they were ready to present their case.
It was rather simple: Before God would be qualified to be their judge, He must endure what they had endured. Their decision was that God should be sentenced to live on earth as a man.
But because He was God, they set certain safeguards to be sure He could not use His divine powers to help himself:
— Let Him be born a Jew.
— Let the legitimacy of His birth be doubted so that none will know who is really His father.
— Let Him champion a cause so just but so radical that it brought down upon Him the hate, condemnation, and eliminating efforts of every major traditional and established religious authority.
— Let Him try to describe what no man has ever seen, tasted, heard, or smelled. Let Him try to communicate God to men.
— Let Him be betrayed by His dearest friends. Let Him be indicted on false charges and tried before a prejudiced jury and convicted by a cowardly judge.
— Let Him see what it is to be terribly alone, completely abandoned by every living thing.
— Let Him be tortured, and let Him die the most humiliating death with common thieves.
As each leader announced his portion of the sentence, loud murmurs of approval went up from the great throng of people.
When the last had finished pronouncing the sentence, there was a long silence.
No one uttered another word. No one moved.
For suddenly, all knew – God had already served His sentence.
Source – “Right On” By Christian Liberation, Berkeley, CA
Isaiah 53:4, 5 (NIV)
4 Surely he took up our pain
and bore our suffering, …
5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
by his wounds we are healed.
At Jesus trial,
Luke 23:22-25 (NASB)
22 And Pilate said to them the third time,
“Why, what evil has this man done?
I have found in Him no guilt demanding death;
therefore I will punish Him and release Him.”
23 But they were insistent, with loud voices asking that He be crucified.
And their voices began to prevail.
24 And Pilate pronounced sentence that their demand be granted.
25 And he released the man they were asking for who had been thrown into prison for insurrection and murder,
but he delivered Jesus to their will.
On the cross, Jesus,
Mark 15:34 (NASB)
34 At the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice,
“Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?” which is translated,
“My God, My God,
why have You forsaken Me?”
Luke 23:34 (NASB)
34 But Jesus was saying,
“Father, forgive them;
for they do not know what they are doing.”
John 19:30 (NASB)
30 Therefore when Jesus had received the sour wine,
“It is finished!”
And He bowed His head and gave up His spirit.
Matthew 27:50-52 (NASB)
50 And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit.
51 And behold,
the veil of the temple was torn in two
from top to bottom;
and the earth shook and the rocks were split.
52 The tombs were opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised;
Luke 23:41-43 (NASB)
41 “… but this man has done nothing wrong.”
42 And he was saying,
“Jesus, remember me
when You come in Your kingdom!”
43 And He said to him,
“Truly I say to you,
today you shall be with Me in Paradise.”
When Jesus returns,
Revelation 21:3-5 (NKJV)
3 And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying,
“Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men,
and He will dwell with them,
and they shall be His people.
God Himself will be with them and be their God.
4 And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes;
there shall be no more death,
nor sorrow, nor crying.
There shall be no more pain,
for the former things have passed away.”
5 Then He who sat on the throne said,
“Behold, I make all things new.”
And He said to me,
“Write, for these words are true and faithful.”
Revelation 22:20, 21 (NKJV)
20 He who testifies to these things says,
“Surely I am coming quickly.”
Even so, come, Lord Jesus!
21 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.
by 林弟兄, bro Lim
June 5, 2014
Copyright © 林弟兄 bro Lim, Laymanointing, 2014-2017 – All Rights Reserved
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