I’ve been thinking a lot about Jesus’ last days before he was crucified lately. It’s also been a recurring theme in a couple books I’m reading right now. I think about how eager he was to die to save his people from their sin. Luke 9:51 says, “when the days drew near for him to be taken up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem.” In Mark 10:45 Jesus says he “came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Jesus was determined to “die for us while we were yet sinners” (Romans 5:8). I think about how I was whining about my teeth and Jim was patiently serving me. In a similar way, the bible says we hated God. We were wallowing in our pride and sin. Meanwhile, Christ died for us to save us from that exact thing. Our sin. I’m not talking about an easy death either. Jesus didn’t just get shot or die quickly. He was beaten until his flesh was ripped open, carried a cross up hill after losing all that blood, was nailed to it and hung which had to have broken and dislocated many bones and those are just the basics. As if this slow torturous death wasn’t enough, this man who was fully God, who had never once sinned, took on the wrath of his Father the Almighty God for his people who at that moment were deep in sin, careless about him. Read Isaiah 53:1-12 for a great passage of reflection. I remember before I was a believer and was living in utter sin. All I cared about was myself but Jesus at the right time showed me he died for me. He opened my eyes and I saw the ways I had rejected this God who loved me so much he took the death and wrath that I alone deserved. He did this for all that would repent and turn away from their sin and trust in Him. He did this for his BRIDE.
Marriage is a picture of Christ and the church. Husbands are to “love their wives as Christ loves the church and gave himself up for her” (Ephesians 5:25). And for the wives, “as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands” (Ephesians 5:24). It’s a beautiful picture and a profound mystery as Paul says later in that chapter.
For the married ladies out there, don’t forget what a privilege it is to be part of that example. It’s so easy to get caught up in what the world tells us about marriage. That it’s to make us happy and fulfill us. Marriage is for God’s glory and our sanctification. Joy and happiness doesn’t come from marriage or a spouse, it comes from God alone.
For the single girls, I know it is hard. I was just there thinking that I would never be past the single stage. But God is good and gracious whether you’re married or single. And you can find contentment in either of those stages in life. Let Jesus, the one who died a brutal death for you, bring you joy. I don’t mean that your circumstances will always be joyful and your life will be easy. I am saying that through Christ no matter what may come you can find joy, peace and love in him.
Most of us want so badly to cling to someone whether that be a parent, spouse or friend. If we would just shift our eyes and hearts and attention to God our lives would change radically from the inside out. Let us all cling to our Savior.
“My sheep hear my voice and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand.” John 10:27-28.