“How could a loving father allow his son to die in such a way?”
People will ask that question more often this week than at any other time of year. They will see Christ’s crucifixion from purely a human point of view comparing God to a human father who wouldn’t come to the aid of his son but instead allowed him to die in the most cruel and suffering way.
But, God is not a human Father. Neither was Jesus human. He was God come to earth in human form.
And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness:
God was manifest in the flesh (Jesus) . . . 1 Timothy 3:16
Beyond our human comprehension, God exists simultaneously as Father and Son. Jesus and God are One.
If we view Jesus’ crucifixion from that perspective, things change. We understand that Christ’s crucifixion was not God proving His power over humans by inflicting terrible pain and suffering on His human Son. Instead, we see God in the flesh, enduring the pain and suffering that we humans inflict on Him—and all the while He continues to forgive and love us.
You might think of it this way: Any loving human father would feel terrible pain and suffering if his children consistently hurt and rejected him. He would worry: What if death separates us forever before this gets resolved?
God is no different. He doesn’t want death to separate us from Him. So, He made a way for that not to happen. The crucifixion represents God allowing Himself, in the human form of Jesus, to endure the pain and suffering (sin) that WE, His children, inflict upon Him. We humans killed Jesus in the flesh. But because Jesus and God are One, it was our Heavenly Father whom we tried to kill. But, God prevailed. He did not die. God proved to us His power over death, over sin.
And here’s the most important part:
Jesus said, “Father, forgive them;
for they know not what they do.” Luke 23:34
We are the THEY in that sentence. We are the children who consistently inflict pain and suffering on God, our Father, whenever we sin. And because God will not coexist with sin, it separates us from Him.
But God forgives us.
If we believe in His love and forgiveness, He promises that sin will never separate us from Him. We will not die in the flesh, but instead, like Jesus, we’ll live forever with God and be loved by Him with a love that we, as humans, can only imagine.
So, as Good Friday approaches, set aside your human understanding, and try to see Jesus’ crucifixion from God’s point of view.
How wonderful that our Heavenly Father
endures all the suffering that we cause Him
and still continues to love and forgive us.
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