And So What?

File_Stripes2

A message I heard yesterday by Pastor Toby Davis inspired me to do a short study on Isaiah 53.  Especially verses 3-5

Isaiah 53:3-5 New International Version (NIV)

He was despised and rejected by mankind,  a man of suffering, and familiar with pain. Like one from whom people hide their faces he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.

Jesus died on a tree or a cross.  And so what?  What does that have to do with me?  May sound a bit flippant but how are we actually living? So what does it all mean to us Christians anyway?  When we get sick, diseased in our body, depressed or anxious are we really any different than those who don’t claim to even know Jesus?  Sometimes it looks as if we are not any different.  Sometimes instead of taking time to study and read what God’s word says for ourselves and applying it to our situation we just react the exact same way as those do who don’t even have the covering of the blood on them.  So what sets us apart?  Really, are we any different If we are… why do we respond the exact same way as they do?

Are you ever sick in your body?  Are you sometimes tormented in your mind?  Does life get so heavy at times you feel as if you are going to break under the load?  Ever suffer from depression or have your mind not want to shut off due to racing anxious thoughts?  Better yet, have you ever just had a full-blown panic attack? Ever tormented in your own head?

This whole “Jesus died on the cross” thing just may be the answer you may want to know more about.  Especially if you are a born again believer.

So His hands and feet were nailed to a cross.  Ok, what’s the big deal about that anyway?  According to Dr. Frederick Zugibe, piercing of the median nerve of the hands with a nail can cause pain so incredible that even morphine won’t help, “severe, excruciating, burning pain, like lightning bolts traversing the arm into the spinal cord.” Rupturing the foot’s plantar nerve with a nail would have a similarly horrible effect.

Jesus actually did some pretty nasty suffering.

Yes Jesus loves me.  That’s a cliché everyone is familiar with.  Just four simple words right?

Well, look just a little closer.

Do you have any idea just much Jesus actually loves YOU?  James Thompson believed that Jesus did not die from exhaustion, the beatings or the 3 hours of crucifixion, but that he died from agony of mind producing rupture of the heart. His evidence comes from what happened when the Roman soldier pierced Christ’s left side. The spear released a sudden flow of blood and water (John 19:34). Not only does this prove that Jesus was already dead when pierced, but Thompson believes it is also evidence of cardiac rupture. Respected physiologist Samuel Houghton believed that only the combination of crucifixion and rupture of the heart could produce this result.

Jesus died of a broken heart.  Do we really get that?  Jesus did not die from exhaustion, the beatings or the 3 hours of crucifixion, but that he died from agony of mind.  His physical heart actually burst, it ruptured. 

When we read that Jesus was despised and rejected and he was a man of suffering and familiar with pain just what does that mean exactly?  In the Hebrew and Greek this reference to suffering and being familiar with pain implies a bodily pain and disease as well as any sickness or disease, anxiety, mental torment, affliction or any evil calamity.  Read that again.

  • Bodily pain
  • Diseases
  • Sickness
  • Anxiety
  • Mental torment
  • Affliction
  • Any evil calamity

It was a severe suffering of both body and soul. Every nerve sensitive to pain in Jesus body was exhausted.  He felt my pain as HIS own pain.  He was well acquainted with and familiar with all types of grief and pain.  Again, if we were to study this in the Greek this means pain was His constant companion.  When He bore my suffering He actually carried it.  He did not just magically remove it, which He could have done.  He picked up the load of it all.  The Greek states “he took it upon himself” and “took it away from me”.  He felt it. Every bit of it.  Bearing it, upholding it, carrying it as to remove the burden from my shoulders and put it on his own.  Again, He was acquainted with sorrows, all types of sorrows.  All types of pains in the mind, anguish, anxiety, trouble of the soul, distresses in the mind.  He was subjected to mental sorrow and afflictions enough to remove them from ME.  I don’t have to carry them.  He was wounded, tormented.  So why should I be wounded and tormented now?  He already suffered it for me.  He endured a painful physical piercing and mental pain.  He was bruised which indicates He was broken to pieces, crushed in inwardly and outwardly.  By HIS stripes we were healed.  By HIS stripes I was healed.  By HIS stripes you were healed. Stripes are blows to the skin, bruises, hurts, wounds where blood collects under the skin.  We would refer to “beaten black and blue”.

Since Jesus actually did all this why then would He expect any of us to suffer and carry sickness, disease, depression, anxiety or any other mental oppression? How foolish would that be?  Stop and think about it. He bore it; He already picked up and carried sickness and disease as HIS own.  He did this so we would not have to.  He removed it from us.  So therefore by HIS stripes we were healed.  It has already been done.  We don’t have to beg for healing. So Why do we do it?  Why do we walk around suffering?  If we do this, then Jesus death on the cross meant what for us?  Why would he suffer, carry and transfer the load from me to HIM only to expect me to pick it up and carry it again in my mind and body?

Yes, Jesus died on the cross for us.  But it’s a little more complex than it sounds.  Yes, Jesus loves me.  But there’s a whole lot more to the story than just that one sentence.  Yes, by HIS stripes I am healed but take a closer look at what that means for you, what it means for me.

If Jesus lives in your heart and he has forgiven your sins take time to look closely at what that means. What does that really mean to you?  What does it really mean to me?  Does it make any real difference to use while we are here on earth?   It’s so much more than just a Bible story.  By HIS death I have life, I have health, I have healing, I have a sound mind, I can walk through this life with purpose and meaning.  Yet, He is not going to force us to walk with HIM.  He is not going to force you to be healed, whole and well.  It’s all a gift.

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