Thursday, August 11, 2016

between them was a cross

The Word for today:
Psalm 102
Psalm 102 transports me.  It just carries me away.
The introductory ascription tells us that this is a prayer of the afflicted, when he is overwhelmed and pours out his complaint before the Lord.
We know this man is Jesus because the Holy Spirit, the author of the Bible, identifies him in Hebrews 1:10-12.
What we overhear in the opening verses of Psalm 102 is no less than the voice of Jesus Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane. It's the voice of a lone soldier, far away from home, readying himself for the battle to come.
But the tone and the setting change abruptly in the second half of Psalm 102. No longer is Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, his cross just ahead. Now resurrected, he looks back to that time, that place:
For he has looked down from the height of his sanctuary;
from heaven did the LORD behold the earth. 
(verse 19)
Then suddenly, at a set time, he re-appears in his glory--because the time to favor her has arrived (verses 13, 16).
The time to favor her? Who is she?
I've got some Good News:  she is we, and the arrangements have all been made:
Though it hasn't been revealed yet, the time has been set.  It's a date!
A new wedding garment (verse 26) has been purchased--at a place just a stone's throw from Gethsemane.
A new home is being readied:
In My Father's house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. (John 14:2)
There's going to be a big reception:
If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also. (John 14:3)
He'll be picking us up!
How can a Psalm that begins so sad and lonely end so happily? Here's how:
For the joy that was set before him he endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:2)
Just like the Bible, Psalm 102 starts in a garden, then ends in a heaven. And between them was a cross.
I am in absolute rapture over this Psalm. It just carries me away!

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