He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. II Corinthians 5:21
We are now one month away from the celebration of Jesus' death and resurrection. I've been thinking about all the ways Jesus suffered for us. It is obvious that someone who is crucified on a cross would have physical and emotional suffering. However, the spiritual suffering Jesus endured on the cross is not as easily recognizable. When you contemplate deeply what spiritual suffering must have been like, you will realize that it was the worst suffering of all.
Here are some of the sufferings of Jesus: He was mercilessly beaten. He carried the heavy cross until He became too weak. He suffered emotionally when He was stripped of His robe and left to hang virtually naked before the world. The shame and humiliation would have been acute for any dignified Jewish rabbi. He was painfully nailed to the cross by His hands and feet. Then, as the cross slammed down in the ground the pain was excruciating as it pulled at the tendons in His hands. He wore a crown of thorns that brought pain and bleeding from His head. His suffering included mocks and jeers. Breathing soon became nearly impossible as He could not breathe unless He pulled His body up with His hands in dreadful pain. But, all these forms of pain wouldn’t have been a drop in the bucket alongside the spiritual humiliation He endured as He was spiritually stripped of His robe of righteousness in God’s eyes. Christ didn’t just take our sins upon Himself, He became those sins for us. Carrying the eternal punishment for our sins in His perfect, sinless self was a price that no one else could ever pay or bear. The pain and suffering that our sins brought Him was beyond what any words can describe. It was ultimate suffering. Imagine how dirty and vile and evil and guilty and ashamed Jesus must have felt as He hung there before a holy God with our sins exposed as though they were His! We have one month to prepare our hearts before we meet together to re-live the passion of Christ. However, it should be our daily experience to let all that Christ did for us affect our whole heart and life. Would you thank Him today and every day for bearing your sin—so that you can wear His righteousness?
Father, thank you for enduring the pain of sending your only Son to die for our sins. Jesus, saying "thank you" to You is not enough. We worship you and love you forever. In this month ahead, prepare our hearts to sing and pray and rejoice in all You have done to bring resurrection life and power and love and all Your gifts to this dark and needy world. Make out of our lives a lasting legacy of Your love. Amen!
This Sunday at Faith Fellowship we start our service at 10 AM. Last Sunday we "sprung ahead" one hour as we changed our clocks to Daylight Savings Time. This week our church service will "spring ahead" another hour as we change our time of service from 11 AM to 10 AM. Our message will be on How our Love Rejoices. We will have some special guests, Marv and Sharon Utecth. They will be sharing some songs with us before the message.
With a voice of singing, let the whole world be filled with the praise of our God!
Christians continue to be the most persecuted believers in the world with over 90,000 followers of Christ being killed in the last year, according to prominent Italian sociologist and author Massimo Introvigne.
There are 153,000.000 orphans in this world. Enough to go around the 10,913 mile perimeter of the US four times when standing shoulder to shoulder. Among the many causes are starvation, war and disease. Psalm 68:5 "A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling." Faith Fellowship is doing a fund drive for Samaritan's Purse twice a year. Please designate your gift to Faith Fellowship with "Samaritan's Purse" in the memo. There are some matching funds for those who want to help the helpless of this world. ...