I’ve heard it more than once and there is a high likelihood that these words might have escaped my own lips during my lost years. It is the confession of a bitter and blind soul. Some time back, while sharing the Gospel with a time-weathered man, he spoke with a barely-contained scowl, “God ain’t never done nothin’ for me.” It has been many years since that conversation took place and, honestly, I cannot ever remember how I responded. I hope it was patient and compassionate but I didn’t have much of either of those two things back in those days. While reading the final chapters of Matthew’s Gospel this morning I was struck with all that Jesus, my great God and Savior, did in the hours of His betrayal and crucifixion. He did all of this for me. He did it for that confused and embittered man with whom I spoke more than a decade ago. He did it for you. If you will, take some time to ponder this list and don’t let guilt rise up in your heart to predominate this moment. Instead, welcome gratitude to blossom. Experience relief. Sense His love. Receive this gift. Ponder the significance of why Jesus went to such lengths. He had asked the Father to allow for a different way – a different cup to be received- if it were possible.
But it was not possible. So Jesus, fully yielded to the Father’s plan, did this for you. It shows me again that I can trust Him today.
Jesus in Matthew, Chapter 27.
WHAT HE DID FOR YOU:
Jesus delivered (vs. 2)
Jesus condemned (vs. 3)
Jesus interrogated (vs. 11-14)
Jesus rejected by the crowds (vs. 15-25)
Jesus whipped (vs. 26)
Jesus stripped (vs. 28)
Jesus crowned with thorns (vs. 29)
Jesus mocked (vs. 29)
Jesus spat upon ( vs. 30)
Jesus beaten (vs. 30)
Jesus led away for crucifixion (vs. 31)
Jesus pierced (vs. 35)
Jesus indicted for treason against Caesar (vs. 37)
Jesus taunted (vs. 39-44)
Jesus forsaken (vs. 46)
Jesus dead (vs. 50)
Jesus entombed (vs. 60)
The price for our redemption was fully paid and this liberating reality was proven when, three days after His burial, Jesus emerged from the tomb alive. The authority of death was revoked that day after it had reigned over the human race since the Garden of Eden. For forty days Jesus presented Himself alive to scores of people, including 500 gatherers in one singular setting. Because Jesus vanquished death, He is worthy of your full trust. He was not merely a good man. He is the God-man and His promises made were kept. He made an additional promise in John 14:1-3 when He declared that He would return to this planet in the future. This promise will also be kept. You see, in His fathomless grace and mercy, God has not merely done something for you … He has done it all on your behalf. Eye has not seen nor has ear heard the half of what God has prepared for mankind. He requires one thing of each of us in response: abiding trust & confidence in Him.
What God begins, He must finish. and this is the greatest of news.