2006-10-20 - Basic Beliefs
Part 7 - Based on The Apostle's Creed
(Christ) "...Suffered under Pontius Pilate..."
We don't serve an "Ivory Tower" Lord - removed from the pain of the real world. If Christ had never suffered, we couldn't have full confidence that He could understand our situations. But He suffered more than most of us will ever have to go through. For you. For me. So we could spend eternity with God.
Most of us thankfully will never be beaten. But some of us have been or will be. Those who have been abused as children or partners - or pistolwhipped by robbers or rapists - will be moved by John 19 - which relates that Jesus was flogged. Jesus understands the pain of abuse victims.
Have you ever faced the frustration of being misunderstood? So has our Lord. One example recorded by Matthew in Chapter 27, verses 20-24:
20 But the chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowds to ask for Barabbas and to put Jesus to death. 21 But the governor said to them, "Which of the two do you want me to release for you?" And they said, "Barabbas." 22 Pilate said to them, "Then what shall I do with Jesus who is called Christ?" They all said, "Crucify Him!" 23 And he said, "Why, what evil has He done?" But they kept shouting all the more, saying, "Crucify Him!" 24 When Pilate saw that he was accomplishing nothing, but rather that a riot was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd, saying, "I am innocent of this Man's blood; see to that yourselves."
Jesus understands that frustration and sadness.
Have you been made fun of - perhaps because of a facial deformity (big nose?), weight problem, a birthmark, lower IQ, the kind of car you drive or the kind of clothes you wear? Our Lord was mocked as well. Jesus understands the pain of someone who is painfully teased or derided.
27 Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the Praetorium and gathered the whole Roman cohort around Him. 28 They stripped Him and put a scarlet robe on Him. 29 And after twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on His head, and a reed in His right hand; and they knelt down before Him and mocked Him, saying, " Hail, King of the Jews!" 30 They spat on Him, and took the reed and began to beat Him on the head. 31 After they had mocked Him, they took the scarlet robe off Him and put His own garments back on Him, and led Him away to crucify Him.
Have your friends or family ever abandoned you - physically or emotionally? Jesus understands. See Peter's denial in Luke 22.
Do you struggle with temptation? Jesus understands. As Hebrews 4 and 5 teach us, Christ Jesus was tempted. He identifies with our temptations and He is the only Priest we need - replacing the old priesthood and Old Covenant (see Hebrews 7:18-19; 7:27-28).
No matter what we go through - spiritually, emotionally or physically - our Lord understands fully - because He is God, and because He himself has personally suffered.
Comments or Questions?
All Scriptures are from the New American Standard Bible unless otherwise stated.