Posted by Mike San Martino
On this silent Saturday of Holy week, I’ve been thinking about the pain Jesus endured on our behalf when he died on the cross for our sins.
He endured ghastly physical pain, beatings and crucifixion, and he endured the deeper spiritual pain of taking upon himself the sin of the whole world (or at least those in the world who will choose to receive his free offer of salvation).
He Himself bore our sins in His body on the tree, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. “By His stripes you are healed.” 1 Peter 2:24
Through his righteous suffering, sacrificial death and glorious resurrection: our debt is paid, our souls are healed, our sin is forgiven, our adoption papers are signed – and more.
He accomplished through his death and resurrection, what we could never accomplish in ourselves. He made us righteous and clean before God, enabled us to be called children of God and he allowed us to be alive in the Spirit.
For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive in the Spirit. 1 Peter 3:18
There are times when I feel overwhelmed by my own pain and the pain of other people. During this season of COVID-19 infection and death we are surrounded by families suffering and we are praying it won’t affect our own families.
As a Christian, as a pastor and now as a therapist, I am so grateful Jesus carried his own pain, my pain, and the pain of others on the cross.
Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed. Isaiah 53:4-5
Today, Jesus invites you to come to him with your problems, your burdens, you fears, your anxieties, and the pain you bear for yourself and others. As you prepare for Easter will you allow Jesus to give your rest for your soul and freedom from your anxieties?
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7
As your prepare yourself for Easter, it is time to leave behind the pain and sin, and embrace the joy of the resurrection.
Why did Jesus endure our sin, and his pain and death? For the joy of being with his Father!
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:2
I give you thanks, for you are good, and your mercy is endless.
Here I stand, in this holy week,
This week in which your church remembers Jesus’ passion and death,
And I am distracted by many things.
Turn my eyes now to the One who comes in your name
The one who opens the gates of righteousness
The one who answers when we call.
I bless you, Lord, for shining your light upon me,
And for sending your son to us, in human frailty.
To walk the road we walk.
Open my eyes that I may see him coming,
And may praise him with a pure heart.
And may walk in the way of his suffering,
And share also in his resurrection.
Through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever.
(Excerpted from 8 Prayers to Pray Each Day of Holy Week by Rachel Marie Stone)