Before we celebrate the joys of Resurrection Sunday and the gifts that were attached, lets first remember the sacrifices that were made before the physical death. The rulers and leaders in the synagogues did not respect Jesus for who He was and wanted to incite the people against Him. They thought, “Isn’t this Mary and Joseph’s boy? He is claiming to be the Son of God!?! That is blasphemy!”. Through all the accusations, He had to still be receptive to the will of God. The Son of God was holy but he was friends with those who were not of his class. He befriended tax collectors, sinners and those who did not belong in the family of God. He represented the sinner when accused by those who knew the law and introduced an adulterer to living waters. On top of all his accusations that were received from the critics, he had to also deal with the confusion within His own circle. Three of the individuals who hung close with Him ended up being a betrayer, a doubter, and a denier. These people were His friends, so before the cross, we were taught many things through His life.
How many of us have dealt with similar situations? People belittle us because of where we come from and what they expect us to be. We all don’t come from a five-star family and all of us were not raised with a silver spoon in our mouths. Still, we have been given abundant life and spiritual blessings that only grace and mercy could afford. We did not receive this favor through works but through the divine impartation that was planned before the beginning of time. Do you attend church but aren’t afraid to speak to those who are not like you? We don’t do what others do but are no means better than them. To show them the magnitude of the love we have been given, we introduce them to Christ. Sometimes we are betrayed, doubted and denied by those who are closest to us but we still showcase the power of God in our lives. If you have experienced this within your life, you are not alone, because Christ went through similar situations.
All of that happened before the physical tribulation He endured on the cross. Picture Jesus, in front of Pilate and Herod being ridiculed and asked about His supposed kingdom. I can only imagine the hurt He felt while hearing the same people who chanted “Hosanna!” now screaming “Crucify Him!”. Being brutally beaten all the way to the cross, I can only imagine the thoughts that were in His head. He watched those who genuinely loved him be in despair. “How can they do that to Jesus?!?” Even though these people probably didn’t understand what was going on, some still knew that this man once healed and spoke powerful words to them. Now He was in the hands of those who did not understand what he had offered while here on earth. Then when Christ finally reached the cross, bloody but only to experience more torment, He was between two criminals. These two criminals had two different perspectives. One criminal actually understood that Christ didn’t deserve to be where he was and they, on the other hand, actually deserved their punishment.
Many know how the Gospels depict the ordeal that occurred on Good Friday and if not, I encourage you to read about it in either Matthew, Mark, Luke or John. We are all quarantined and I do not know how you will be spending this Resurrection Weekend but I remember the importance of understanding the sacrifice before the resurrection. Let’s not forget that Jesus died the death we should have died and lived the life we should be living. He wasn’t judgmental and even when the job seemed to be too much to face, His words were, “Not my will but Thy Will be Done”. Let’s remember that the death was not something that would be welcomed by anyone but the abundance that was extended to us was given in genuine love. We did no good to deserve the goodness in what we call “Good Friday” but thank God He looked beyond our faults and see our needs.