Wednesday, April 10, 2013

And there was silence.

The Word for today:
Matthew 26:30-56
mark this: Matthew 26:39--
"O My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will."
They sang a psalm. Then he went to die.
Between the Passover supper and the cross was a garden, called Gethsemane, which means "oil press." It was among the olive groves on the Mount of Olives. There the devil offered Jesus one last temptation.
Back in the beginning of Jesus' ministry, the devil had tempted him in the wilderness. What he'd offered Jesus was a crown without a cross. Jesus resisted the temptation, and the devil departed from him for a season (1).
That season now over, the devil returned to tempt the last Adam (2) in the garden.
The devil played the same hand he'd played in the wilderness, again offering the crown without a cross.
Some will tell you Jesus wavered; that he considered, there in the garden, 'climbing down' from the cross. I, respectfully, spit on that interpretation. Jesus Christ never wavered from the cross.
When he'd told the disciples he must be crucified, Peter had resisted the necessity of the cross. But not Jesus: "Get behind me, Satan," he told him. Jesus had heard the offer before. (3)
What Jesus resisted was not the suffering, represented by the cross. What Jesus resisted was the cup--the cup of sin, which would separate him from the Father as he became sin for us (4).
In the Garden, Jesus Christ asked if there were a way his Father could stand by him during the approaching ordeal. His father said No. Jesus would have to go alone.
Many have died, bravely, for noble causes. They have carried their crosses.
But no one has tasted his cup. His cosmic loneliness -- My God, My God, why hast thou forsken me? -- still travels, at the speed of sound, through blue infinity. It just traveled through your mind.
Very God of very God, he'd said, "Let there be light,"
and there was light.
Very man of very man, he asked, "My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?"
And there was silence.
(1) Luke 4:13; (2) 1 Corinthians 15:45; (3) Matthew 16:23; (4) 2 Corinthians 5:21

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