It was not only what the wicked gave Jesus, but it was also what they took away from Him that revealed the devilishness of their hearts. They gave Him a crown of thorns, stripes upon His back, blows upon His head, a purple robe, and a reed in His hand. But also, as David said in Psalm 22:18 , "They parted my garments among them, and cast lots upon my robe.''
Now surely this was a humiliating thing. But it is also quite evident that they were looking forward to His death. For it is at the moment of death that one loses all one's earthly possessions. The enemy was doing before His very eyes what may be done only after death. What is more, they took from His mother, brothers, and sisters what they had a right to divide and distribute. Even if He were a criminal worthy of death, these clothes were still His. And if after His death His nakedness is exposed to the eyes of all who passed by, it is one thing, but an entirely different thing to do so while He was conscious and still alive. Fitly we sing:
While on my wasted form they stare,
The garments torn from Me they share,
My shame and sorrow heeding not,
And for My robe they cast the lot.
Indeed, shame and sorrow are heaped upon Him. The wicked have absolutely no use for Him. They heaped upon Him all the suffering and shame that they could in that day, while still, behind a false front, acting as though outraged by what they called blasphemy.
But we ought to appreciate the fact that He lost every thing, including His life, so that we might gain everything in an everlasting life that brings us above and beyond all the cruelty and hypocrisy of Satan and of men whom he uses.
To us God gives robes of righteousness and bodies that know no sorrow or shame. Jesus deliberately lost all earthly things so that we might gain heavenly blessings that are indescribably rich. As Paul writes in I Corinthians 2:9 , "Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him."
Song for Meditation: Psalter #171
Why not sing along??
Quote for Reflection:
… If, in the first place, the power of God ought to be extolled by us, that power shines forth in the gospel; if, again, the goodness of God deserves to be sought and loved by us, the gospel is a display of his goodness. It ought then to be reverenced and honored, since veneration is due to God’s power; and as it avails to our salvation, it ought to be loved by us.
But observe how much Paul ascribes to the ministry of the word, when he testifies that God thereby puts forth his power to save; for he speaks not here of any secret revelation, but of vocal preaching. It hence follows, that those as it were willfully despise the power of God, and drive away from them his delivering hand, who withdraw themselves from the hearing of the word. -- John Calvin
- Date: 30-March