UNBORN WORD of the day


“…a body hast thou prepared for me…”.
March 20, 2008, 6:49 pm
Filed under: Biblical Reflections, The Incarnation
scourgingatthepillar.jpg

 

“Consequently, when Christ came into the world, he said,
‘Sacrifices and offerings thou hast not desired
but a body hast thou prepared for me…‘” Heb 10:5

We have mentioned previously (Hebrews 10: 5-7) that Christ spoke these and other words (verses 6-7) immediately upon entering the world – that is, at the one cell stage of His life. So that first cell of His existence was that body prepared for Him. And during the first nine months in the womb, in a special way, His body was being formed for that one acceptable sacrifice that would occur more than thirty years hence.

We invite you now to consider, in a most unique way, the offering of Jesus Christ – beginning in the Garden of Gethsemane and continuing on until His death upon the cross – but considered from the perspective of His body being formed and prepared within the womb for those events which would occur more than 30 years later.

Consider the crucifixion in this light. The blood which will be shed in this sacrifice began to course through His body about eight months before His birth and would continue to run freely until that final offering. Likewise, every physical feature of our Lord’s body, while forming in the womb, took on its own predestined sacrificial character, a character that would be eternally stamped upon it during His Passion and death:

First His Heart begins a spiritual bleeding in the
Garden of Gethsemane and he is “sorrowful, even
to death”. (Mk.14.34)

He gets on His knees in a prayer agony. (Lk.22.41)

He falls upon His face, in the dark, in the dirt, alone.
(Mt.26.39)

Now sweat as great drops of blood fell from His face
and head
. His Heart’s spiritual bleeding is too
intense for this Body, so the Body begins to bleed itself.
(Lk.22.44)

He now receives a kiss upon His cheek and a feigned
embrace from His onetime friend Judas. (Mt.26.49)

He is forcefully seized. (Mt.26.50)

His hands are tied and He is led like a lamb to slaughter.
(Jn.18.12)

Now His face is struck because of the response He gave
to Annas, the father in law of Caiaphas the High Priest.
(Jn.18.13,22)

Wrists still bound, He is led to the home of Caiaphas.
(Jn.18.24)

They spit in His face as the interrogation begins, perhaps
because He is standing erect, head still held high.
(Mt.26.67)

They cover His face (Mk.14.65) to blindfold His eyes.
(Lk.22.64)

His face is slapped and struck and He is now the subject
of a game. “Prophesy to us, you Christ! Who is it that
struck you?” (Mt.26.67) His very Identity is mocked.

He is received with blows by Caiaphas’ guards, perhaps
as He walks past them. (Mk.14.65)

The next morning He is led to the Council, perhaps
like an animal with a cord around His waist or neck.
(Lk.22.66)

From the Council He is led to Pilate and then sent to
Herod. Herod’s soldiers ridicule Jesus and clothe Him
in a costume. (Lk.23.11)

Our Lord’s back is scourged by order of Pilate.
(Jn.19.1)

He is stripped of the costume and a robe is again
put on Him. (Mt.27.28,Jn.19.2)

On His head a crown of thorns is placed, causing rivulets
of blood to trickle from His scalp down His forehead
and down the back of His neck. (Jn.19.2)

In His hands they mockingly place a reed to represent
a royal scepter. (Mt.27.29)

Now the soldiers spit on Him and take the reed back and
hit Him with it. (Mt.27.30)

And they continue to strike Him with their hands as well.
(Jn.19.3)

He is given the large wooden cross to carry. (Jn.19.17)
Its rough abrasive weight upon His recently scourged
back
.

He has trouble carrying the cross (Simon of Cyrene is
therefore forced to help; Lk.23.26) Tradition tells us
that Jesus fell three times as He carried the cross.
(Reference: the Stations of the Cross)

At Golgotha they strip Him and nail His
hands and feet
to the cross. (Lk.23.33 34)

Aching, exhausted, bruised, bleeding, weary of dying,
Christ hangs on the cross, resembling more a slaughtered
animal than a man in the final stage of dying.
(Ps.22.6,14 15)

He is offered sour vinegar to drink, probably extended
on a saturated sponge on a stick and placed against His
lips
; all in jest. (Lk.23.36)

Finally, a spear is thrown into His side. (Jn.19.34)
Probably penetrating His Heart, causing the issuance
of “blood and water“.


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