Unlimited: We Get to Share in the Suffering of Jesus
Dec 14, 2016 869
Be glad for the chance to suffer as Christ suffered. It will prepare you for even greater happiness when He makes His glorious return (1 Peter 4:13, CEV).
The four Gospels focus on the death of Christ. If we are Christians we must share in the Passion of Jesus Christ.
Before Jesus dies, He must be betrayed. He must go into the dark recesses of Gethsemane that prefigure the darkness of Calvary. At Calvary the sun veiled its face. The sun’s darkness was in sympathy with the darkness of Christ’s soul. On the Cross, His soul suffered sheer horror and abandonment.
We cannot be Christians and at the same time always be “hail fellow, well met” type characters, and “get on well with everybody and anybody” types.
Christians have to stand for something even if everyone else opposes them. You may be a lonely figure because of your faith. You may be betrayed by your friends as Jesus was. You may be sold out by your friends, as Jesus was. You may have your reputation stripped away – they did it to Him – but you have to be a whistle-blower if circumstances demand it.
There’s no dodging the Cross. There’s no dodging betrayal. There’s no dodging Gethsemane. This is the price we pay for being a Christian.
It costs nothing to become a Christian but it may cost everything to remain one.
Eli’s Reflection: Have you suffered anything for the sake of the Cross? Have you really? When you suffer for the Cross, there can be no bitterness, only love; no anger, only forgiveness. Think through your own life carefully, and pray that the Spirit will reveal to you who it is that you still need to forgive.