Friday, March 18, 2016
It Is Finished
I found this video and song to be very powerful and thought I'd write on the topic since Easter is just around the corner.
The world is a very sad and scary place to be in. Even now, I just got out of the hospital on Sunday and a few days later I'm feeling depressed again. There is so much despair in the world. Sometimes it's hard to find any good in this world. When we do find good in the world, we try so hard to hold onto it, but it eventually slips right through our fingers. Is there really any hope for our deprived world?
Enter Jesus. There was no hope for us until God decided to act. He gave us chance after chance to change and warned us what would happen if we didn't change. We still didn't listen though. We were rebellious towards God. So in order to save us, He acted. He sent His son Jesus in the vulnerable form of an infant. Jesus grew up and was tempted just like us, but he didn't give in. He was innocent and perfect. But he was a man who knew sorrow. He knew pain. He had compassion for people. He healed the sick and the broken hearted. He raised people from the dead! But one of his friends betrayed him and he was mocked, beaten, tortured, spat on, and ultimately killed. He died for our transgressions. But on the third day he rose back to life! Now there is hope for us!
I know this can be difficult to understand. I often wonder "Would he want me? Why would he die for someone as despicable as me?" I've got physical scars all over my arms from cutting (five weeks clean now). I'm full of emotional scars. If I had been there, would Jesus have healed me? Would he have wanted me to be with him? Or would I be even too sick for him to care? I've been rejected so many times, would he have rejected me too?
Maybe I'm the only person who wonders about these things. But here's the thing, Jesus does want us. If he didn't, why would he have died for all of us, even me? Yes, I have scars, but so does he! He understands our scars because he has them too! How do I know this? When Thomas saw Jesus after he came back to life, Jesus told him to touch where he had holes in his hands (and feet), and his side where he had been pierced by a spear. These did not heal after he came back to life. Jesus understands scars. Jesus, a man of sorrow, knows what pain feels like, physical and emotional. When his best friend Lazarus died, he wept. When he was in the garden before being arrested, he sweat blood. This is a real condition (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hematidrosis)! He was in so much distress he sweat blood! How many of us can say we've experienced that great of distress?
On the cross, the final words of Jesus were, "It is finished." What did this mean? The hold sin had on his followers was no longer there. We were slaves of Satan but he no longer owned us, we were free in Christ! When Satan tries to get ownership over us again, Jesus says, "No, they're mine!" This does not mean we no longer sin. God gave us free will and sometimes with that free will, we act out against God. But He forgives us because of what Jesus did. That is what Easter is all about. Jesus not cleaning our slate, but breaking the slate all together so we can have a relationship with the all powerful God! We were separated from God, but Jesus became the bridge that brings us back to God.
Our pain and suffering comes to an end when we are finally united with God. But until then, sin is still in the world which means we're still going to experience pain, we're still going to experience suffering. But we do not go through it alone. Jesus understands and is with us through it all. We are never alone. That is what gets me through my depression. Knowing Jesus is there with me and understands what I'm going through.