Romans 15:3. For even Christ didn’t please Himself but, as it is written: ‘The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me.’”
“Insults’ comes from the Greek meaning reproach or defamation. Within society if a person has been defamed he or she can go take the matter to court. Should they win, the victim could be awarded substantial monetary damages. In thinking about that, I wondered about the spiritual implications of this. The Creator has been insulted by the pinnacle of His work, you and me, by how we have treated each other and the environment. Atheists are more strident with their rejection of His existence. Add to it, the way we slander His Name, His law, His word, and His Son, Jesus.
One day He will take us to Heaven’s courtroom. Unfortunately for us, He is both the complainant and the Presiding Judge. The verdict is against us. The penalty we can never pay. The charge of insulting, defaming God is only one of many charges against us. In comparison with aspects of our ungodliness belittling the Lord is small, but it must be dealt with. What can we offer in our defence? Nothing. Who would represent us in such a High Court and argue the case for mercy? What is the price to pay?
As the Passover time comes to us again we are made aware of the price of a blasphemous life. This was the charge against Jesus by the High Priest. It was a death sentence. That is what confronted us in the future, an eternal dismissal from the presence of God and eternal life. In the text from Romans quoted above reflect upon this added weight Jesus took to the cross on our behalf. Your verbal, lifestyle and spiritual slander, unbelief, rebellion plus self-righteous mockery of the Almighty fell on the Son. Jesus stepped into your scene, my scene and took all which was in the charge sheets and put His name to it.
The cross of Christ is the most momentous event within time or beyond time. What the Son of God, the Son of Man took upon Himself as our personal representative can never be fully understood. What we can understand and take to heart is the fact, He did it. So, what was achieved on our behalf? That depends upon two things. One, did Jesus survive the death penalty? Two, how have you responded to what our representative and substitute endured and achieved? The answer to number one is ‘He is risen!’ The answer to number two requires yours and my faith conviction that He is risen! He is my Saviour! He is my Lord! He is the Son of God and my Advocate. Now, when I stand before my Lord at the Judgement seat I have my Advocate beside me. His words would be, on my behalf and your ‘The charges against this person have been fully paid – by Me!’
To stand alone before the Father in the courtroom of Heaven is to have no advocate, no answer to the charges, no possible way to pay the damage bill, no hope of mercy.
Christ Jesus and the cross offer peace, forgiveness, hope and a new beginning with eternity in it. Over this Passover and Eastertime may you be once again captured by Calvary!
©Ray Hawkins. Author of ‘Captured by Calvary’ and other 31 day Devotional Meditations.
His new Devotional ‘The Warrior Lord’s Sword’ is being released in April.