While reading recently from the book ‘Holy, Holy, Holy; Proclaiming the Perfections of God’ I came across a striking passage that forced me to stop and think have I been taking the sacrifice of Jesus Christ in too light a manner? Do I really understand the toil and struggle undertaken by Christ on my behalf? Have I internalized that every bruise, cut, scrape and tear endured by the Son of God was what I deserved? Even more ultimately Jesus’ separation from God the Father was the separation that was justly due to a sinner such as myself. Tragically our walk with God can stir up pride in fallen creatures as ourselves. Let us remember the presence of God in our lives was won by the horrible, tragic, gruesome yet finished work of Jesus Christ. I hope the following passage from the book is as significant to you as it is to me.
We so blithely can say, “He made him to be sin who know no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God” (2Cor. 5:21). It seems an easy transaction. How hard could sin bearing have been for the eternal Son of God? We do not really believe it was an easy thing, but we can unintentionally slip into that attitude. The atonement becomes too familiar. “What a nice thing the cross is,” we think. “Jesus did a nice thing that day.”
We need to see the horror of the cross. He who from all eternity had been seated on the throne of heaven; of whom the surrounding angels sang, “Holy, holy, holy”; He who was beautiful and majestic in glory, purity, and power – that One became so corrupt that we cannot look at Him. We turn our heads and close our eyes; the deformity is too shocking. The seraphim could not look at Him because of His glory, and they covered their eyes. But throughout His life and especially on the cross, we cannot look at Him because of the horror of the sin that He took upon Himself…
It reminds me of the words from an old hymn;
On a hill far away, stood an old rugged Cross
The emblem of suff’ring and shame
And I love that old Cross where the dearest and best
For a world of lost sinners was slain