Friday, April 15, 2011

Oh, What He Gave Up for Us




I recently read this question: If Jesus knew He’d go back to heaven when He died, what did He really give up in sacrificing Himself? (or something to that effect)

Huh?

Got me thinking.

Well, heaven for one. Even for a time, this must have been an unimaginable sacrifice. We’ve never been there. Yet. So, we can’t even conceptualize what it meant for the King of glory to step down out of the holiest place, where there is joy, worship, a completely perfect and sinless atmosphere, and come to an unholy place, where sin has influenced everything from humanity to thorns in the ground; where there would not be worship; where pain and fear and violence reigned. Oh, what He gave up so we could taste heaven. How much He must love us.

Comfort. Besides the comforts of heaven, consider the comforts he did not enjoy here: a nice home (even a “place to lay His head”), a wife, a large family, people who loved him unconditionally, even just one human who understood Him completely. I bet you have someone who “gets” you. Jesus never did. Oh, what He gave up so we could know Him. He loves us so much!

Life. His death was so horrendous, so appalling, so indescribable, even The Passion movie is said to come short of offering a full description of what He suffered. You know what? I don’t care if I’d go to heaven after, I’d have to be motivated by something super extraordinary to suffer that way—especially if I had all the power of the universe at my disposal to bypass Calvary’s hill. What motivated Jesus to willingly shed His blood? To hang on the cross until His heart burst? Love. For you. For me. Oh, what He gave up so we could have real life, abundant life. How much He must love us!

You were the joy set before Him on the cross. You were the reason He came, sacrificing more than we can know, lived, and suffered a horrific death. You are the reason He rose again and made a way to know Him, to be saved, forgiven, have a clean conscious and a purposeful life. You. He gave up everything for you. How He loves us!

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