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Seeds of the Kingdom

A Fresh Look at the Cross

by Margaret Silvester

Surely He took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered Him stricken by God, smitten by Him and afflicted. But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities, the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him, and by His wounds we are healed.
Isaiah 53:4-6, NIV

For me personally, this Easter has been a unique time as I have followed the journey of Jesus from the Passover meal in the upper room to the cross. I have been filled with new wonder at the suffering of Jesus for me, an undeserved sinner. I’ve been reminded of my first meeting with Jesus, in my early teens, when I wondered how someone could know the very worst about me and still love me. At that moment, I fell in love with Jesus, and that love has grown over the decades of my life.

On Good Friday morning, I sat with a large group of fellow believers around the communion table. It was an almost silent time as we invited the Holy Spirit to come and reveal to us the true meaning of the cross. The words in our text for today are emotive words – infirmities, sorrows, stricken, smitten, afflicted, pierced, crushed, punishment, peace. Many of us have known these facts and can recite the verses from Scripture. Have you ever thought that facts are information, but experience of the truth is transformation? This is experienced only at the cross, and it is life-changing, and the source of all healing and restoration in our lives.

Jesus lived in oneness with His Father. He only did what His Father told Him. Yet on the cross He cried in agony, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” This is the only one of the prayers Jesus prayed in Scripture where He doesn’t call God “Father.” He’s experiencing the pain and loss of loneliness and separation. He knows what it feels like when God appears to be silent. Although Jesus endures the separation from His Father, He trusts Him and yields any human agendas He may have into His Father’s hands, as He commits Himself into His care.

Though He is dying physically, soon He will rise again. He will be alive again. He is dying and doesn’t object. He is wronged. Yet forgives. He is abandoned. Yet trusts. What about us, those who profess to be His followers? Do we live our daily lives with the same attitudes displayed by Jesus who humbled Himself and became obedient to death, even death on a cross (Philippians 2:8)?

Consider this. Jesus surrendered everything for you and me. In the light of such sacrifice, can we surrender less than our lives to live in uncompromised obedience to Him?

Margaret Silvester had a career as a teacher prior to being called into full time Christian Ministry with her husband, David, in 1986. They were involved in establishing a Healing Ministry in the local church and Margaret has a passion to see lost and wounded people found and restored. She and her husband joined the Ellel Ministries teaching and ministry team in 2000 after a clear call from God. Margaret`s book "Stepping Stones to the Father Heart of God" has recently been published.

 

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