He grew up like a small plant before the Lord,Â
like a root growing in a dry land.
He had no special beauty or form to make us notice him;
there was nothing in his appearance to make us desire him.
He was hated and rejected by people.
He had much pain and suffering.
People would not even look at him.
He was hated, and we didn’t even notice him.
But he took our suffering on him and felt our pain for us.
We saw his suffering and thought God was punishing him.
But he was wounded for the wrong we did;
he was crushed for the evil we did.
The punishment, which made us well, was given to him,
and we are healed because of his wounds. Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Isaiah 53:2-5 (NCV, my emphasis)
Did you ever wonder why Jesus died the way He did? I look at my grandsons and think, â€œJesus was just like them. Happy. Playing. Laughing as Joseph picked Him up and tossed Him high over his head. Snuggling close to His mother when He fell and scraped His knee.â€ And then I look at my own son, now the age that we suppose that Jesus was when He went to Calvary. I see a strong man with a kind and gentle heart. Jesus, the Son of God, died for me because only He could provide the perfect sacrifice, even blood sacrifice, for my sins. But Jesus, also the man, went through humiliation, the level of which I would have torn out my hair if I had been the mother standing there as a witness. Beaten. Called names as they made fun of Him. Hung naked on a cross in the public road so that everyone could see. It’s beyond what my heart could bear, I think. Why?
I am working on a book that will come out next month. It is written by someone who has been through abuse, humiliation, and great pain. I thank God for the words that He placed in this person’s heart because it is not a book about the details of her abuse but it is a book that encourages and leads others to knowing the healing that God can bring to them. It’s practical and shines a light on the path out of darkness.
I believe that is why Jesus died such a humiliating, excruciating death. No matter what pain and suffering this world brings into my life, Jesus is there, walking before me, showing me that there is a path to life, a victorious life. His promises, given hundreds of years before His arrival like the words in Isaiah, are not just words. His promises are walked out in His own life with real blood, real pain, and real victory. When I am in the darkness of my own â€œFridayâ€, I can know because of Jesus that â€œResurrection Sundayâ€ is there â€“ right there ahead of me. And there are His servants, like this wonderful author, who are willing to share their own testimony of His victory in their lives.
Healing Rain by Michael W. Smith & Martin J. Smith (2004)
Note: God’s Promise of Victory by Iris Lloyd, COMING July 20, 2012