Wow, what an interesting week. All building up to this weekend of celebration, first of Christ’s death and then His resurrection.
This morning as the sky lightened, dawn set crystal trees on fire, seemingly bent and frozen in mourning. How is it that something as destructive and displeasurable as an ice storm could be so beautiful?
How is it that the worst death of all time became so influential that it brought people of all eras, all cultures, together? How is it that they — that we — can say it was so beautiful, it changed our lives forever?
How beautiful are the feet of the messenger who brings good news.
Christ took away the sin of the world — the sin of people like you and me, people of all eras, all nations, all cultures — absorbing the wrath of God in our place on the cross. He who knew no sin, became sin, that we might become righteous. He died so that we might have eternal life with Him. He loves and pursues us, an unfaithful people who rejected Him. Christ demonstrates his love in this, that while we were still sinners, he died.
Hear that? We had nothing acceptable to God. Nothing. He didn’t do what he did on the cross because we “did our best” — we didn’t even try. He didn’t meet us half way or 75% of the way or 25% of the way, he met us ALL the way.
That is why it is beautiful.
This Good Friday we celebrate the marriage proposal of the Lamb to His bride, the Church. The cross, is the ring.
I was reminded of that this morning when rehearsing with the band for the worship service. I was having fun singing, I was worshipping, I was trying so hard to let the words and his memory and his promise sink in. To meditate on them.
But I didn’t “feel” it.
Had my heart gone cold, had it hardened? What was going on? Was there some sin I’ve been holding on to that doesn’t make me right with God??
Except, that’s the whole point of Easter weekend, isn’t it?
While I was up on stage, worrying about all these things while outwardly worshipping with solemnity, a thought put those worries to rest… “don’t pursue feelings, pursue Me, for I first pursued you.”
He took our sin to make us right with God. And not by any effort of mine.
One of the songs was “Jesus Paid It All,” and we skipped the bridge “O praise the one who paid my debt and raised this life up from the dead” because the Disciples had no idea that Sunday was coming.
But Sunday is coming. Jesus is coming.
When I survey the wondrous cross, on which the Prince of Glory died, my richest gain I count but loss, and pour content on all my pride // I hear the Saviour say, thy strength indeed is small, child of weakness watch and pray, find in Me thine all in all. Jesus paid it all, all to Him I owe, sin had left a crimson stain, He washed it white as snow // The Lamb of God in my place, Your blood poured out, my sin erased it was my death You died, I am raised to life, Hallelujah the Lamb of God. There is no greater love… ||