This week we are getting into Psalm 22, which speaks about Christ who passed through the redeeming death and entered into the church-producing resurrection. Wow, a whole week to get into the death of Christ in all its aspects and all its details! I am looking forward to daily know the Lord in His suffering of death for us more – so that my appreciation and my love for Him would grow more…. Yes, I know that the Lord died for me, but why is my love for Him not burning when I consider it? Paul was kind of radical about this when he said in 2 Cor. 5:14-15,
For the love of Christ constrains us because we have judged this, that One died for all, therefore all died; And He died for all that those who live may no longer live to themselves but to Him who died for them and has been raised.
Seeing Christ in His death determines us to love Him
When we see the Lord Jesus as the crucified One, the suffering One, the One who was mocked and ridiculed for us on the cross, the One who didn’t respond back to His persecutors and ridiculers but endured the pain and bore the shame… our heart will be filled with love for Him. On the one hand, no one wants to know or get into the specific sufferings of someone who dies on a cross – human sufferings are ugly, degrading, not pleasant, not inspiring, demoralizing, and even though we may have a dose of suffering, everyone wants to hide it or at least not talk about it.
But there’s One Person in the universe whose sufferings on the cross can be talked about, appreciated, mused upon, analyzed with love and appreciation, and prayed over. The Lord’s death was a glorious death, a lovely death, and a lovable death – we love the Lord because He died for us, He suffered for us, and now we have judged this – since He has died for us and we no longer need to die for our sins, we live to Him who loved us!
In Psalm 22 David’s suffering typifies the sufferings of Christ
In Psalm 22 in particular we see the suffering David who typifies the suffering Christ on the cross. The very first verse was quoted by the Lord Jesus on the cross when He said, My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me? In this Psalm we see David’s description of his suffering – which was turned by God at one point in a description of Christ’s suffering and even a praising towards God. While David was speaking, God came in to speak in his speaking.
Reproached, Despised, Derided, Sneered at, Mocked
Specifically, we see several words that accompany and characterized Christ’s suffering on the cross – the suffering of Christ unto death was through men’s reproach, despising, deriding, sneering, head shaking, and mocking (vv. 6-8; Heb. 13:13b; Isa. 53:3; Luke 23:11; Mark 15:29-32; Matt. 27:39-44). Each of these words describes a particular way the Lord suffered on the cross for us.
He bore our reproach and He was reproached for us(therefore we need to bear His reproach and follow the suffering Jesus outside the camp of religion today, Heb. 13:13) – He was despised and shamed. He was despised – looked down with contempt and with scorn. The Lord Jesus was derided – he was made fun at and laughed in contempt. When the Lord was on the cross, the ridiculers shook / wagged their heads at Him saying, “He committed Himself to Jehovah, let Him rescue Him“(Psa. 22:7-8; Matt. 27:39; Mark 15:29). Christ was mocked – He was held up to scorn or contempt, He was mimicked in derision. All these things happened to Him while He was on the cross persecuted by men – groups of people did these things to Him.
He paid the highest price – don’t you love Him?
What a suffering and what a shame the Lord bore for us! He counted the cost and paid the highest price for the joy set before Him – the church, the heart’s desire of God, His reproduction and multiplication. He passed through crucifixion and persecution while He was on the cross – looking forward to what was after His death. As a Lamb of God, the Lord Jesus was crucified for our redemption (John 1:29; Heb. 9:12).
Don’t you just love Him and appreciate Him more? Isn’t His love so constraining? He considered the crucifixion and persecution and suffering as a price He willingly paid to redeem YOU and ME! What kind of love is this…? [sharing inspired from the life-study of the Psalms, as quoted in the Crystallization-Study of Psalms(1); you can get the morning revival book online or become a fan on Facebook for more updates]
Lord, save us from thinking WE KNOW about this… Save us from being numb and insensitive towards Your death on the cross for us. Unveil us to really see a picture of the sufferings You went through, the persecutions You have suffered, and the horrible death You entered into – so that You may redeem us. Lord, increase our appreciation and our love towards You. May we see You, allow You to constrain us with Your love, and even live TO You who loved us and gave Yourself up for us…
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