Trial and Crucifixion
Isaiah 53 and John Chapters 18-19
Pastor Jimmy Decker
A couple weeks ago I had the privilege to go on a camping trip with some men and their kids from our church. It was a very cold, and memorable time, not just because of the low temperatures, but because I had the honor of participating in a flag retirement ceremony. I had never witnessed this before, and as we circled around a warm campfire, the question was asked of everyone there; “What does this flag mean and represent to you?” As we stood there on that cold and windy night, men and boys began to speak up of what that old flag meant to them. They said words like freedom, hope, sacrifice, honor, peace, pride, and strength. We were honored to have a close friend and marine there to explain and show us the proper way to retire a United States of America flag.
He called us to remove our caps and to stand at attention in silence as they placed the tightly folded, tattered flag into the bright and hot campfire. As we all stood there in silence honoring the flag that once flew high in the sky, a mix of emotions and thoughts began to stir with in me. I began to think about to think about the words of our national anthem and all the men and women who gave so much, even to death, so we can have our freedoms. I even thought about the moms, dads, husbands, wives, brothers, sisters, and children that stay behind not knowing if they’d ever see their loved ones again. All these thoughts and emotions took place within a few minutes as the flag was place and consumed within that fire. It was a moment that I’ll never forget, especially in the future when I see or even hear a flag flapping in the wind. I’ll remember and thank those who gave so much for my freedom.
Now here we are on Good Friday; my mind and emotions are going wild again thinking about all Christ did at calvary so we can have eternal life with him. I’m thinking about the betrayal in the Garden of Gethsemane and how he came forth to save his disciples and all who believe in him (John 18:8). Jesus stepped forward, fully knowing all that was going to happen to him. Facing an unjust trial, experience being beat by trained roman soldiers, and even hanging upon an old rugged cross even to the point of death (John 18-19). Jesus stepped forward like a soldier, because he knew the only way we could be reconciled to God was to offer himself as the ultimate and final sacrifice for us. Stepping up to do something we could never do for ourselves!
The next time you take the Lord's Supper, see a cross, or even when you sit down to enjoy your Easter dinner with your friends and family, take time to remember the price Christ paid for our freedom, peace, joy, hope, and eternal life. Because he gave it all!
Katie Steelman - April 7th, 2023 at 1:02pm
Thank you for this great reminder, Bro. Jimmy!