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December 19 | SUFFERING

Then he released Barabbas to them. But he had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified. – – They stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, and then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand and knelt in front of him and mocked him. “Hail, king of the Jews!” they said. They spit on him, and took the staff and struck him on the head again and again. After they had mocked him, they took off the robe and put His own clothes on him. Then they led him away to crucify him. Matthew 27:26, 28-31

I’ve always wondered why the Gospel writers weren’t led by God to write more details about “how” Jesus suffered. I guess in our human, American mindset and culture, we put much more emphasis on the “how” we suffer or “how much” we suffer… Our self-centered orientation puts more of the focus on “how much we hurt, how we hurt or who causes the hurt.” In Jesus’ story, obviously the focus was more on His purpose than on the gory details of Jesus’ emotions or suffering.

The reality is though, that Jesus suffered immensely and definitively. There were gory details, emotions of this excruciating experience. We should not gloss over the fact that God Himself, through the person of Jesus, submitted Himself to the process of pain as Savior of the World!

RE-read the passages above. Then re-read it again.

No doctors, nurses or parents on site to tend to His wounds. No one came to His rescue or defense. In fact, He had to defend Himself while bleeding towards His death.

Are you suffering? Perhaps no one is running to your aide or defense. Worse yet, there may be people around you causing or influencing your suffering.

How are you responding? If God gave you a purpose for your suffering – what would that be? Are you praying for those involved in your suffering?