I Saw – John the Baptist

“And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God” (John 1:34). Think of all John saw and all that he called upon men to see. John saw a Man standing by the banks of Jordan who did not need to confess failure and flaws. Multitudes had come out to the Jordan to be baptized and confess their sin. In contrast, John heard heaven confess that this was the Son of God in Whom a Father found all His delight. He saw the Spirit of God in dove-like fashion descend and abide upon Him. He saw the clear unmistakable confirmation that this was the Son of God.

As a result, John called upon men on two occasions to behold Him. On the first day, it was to behold the Lamb of God’s providing, the Sin bearer for the world. Throughout the history of the nation of Israel, men had brought their lambs to altars. Each man was confessing a defect, a deficiency within himself as he approached with his lamb. But now, in stark contrast, God was bringing His Lamb to men. Here was God’s Lamb that measured up to the demands of the altar: a Lamb without blemish and without spot. The words which pierced the sky that day attested not only to His outward righteousness, but “in Whom is all My delight.” The all-penetrating eye of God could pierce the exterior and look within. No need for this Lamb to be flayed for God to see the inner perfections. All His thoughts, motives, inward affections were all open for His Father to see, and to evaluate. The result was only delight.

As God’s Lamb, He came to deal with sin. That is where we all began. We looked upon God’s Lamb as the solution to our sin pollution. We often sing,

                                                “I saw One hanging on the tree

                                                In agony and blood”

Our experiences all differ; the road to the cross for each of us was unique and individual to our own lives. But ultimately, we all arrived at a Savior Who dealt with the issue of sin, our sins, against the throne of God. 

John, however, was not content that his disciples only have that first look. He called upon them, once again, the very next day, to “Behold the Lamb!” Now, it is not as the sin-bearer, but as the object of our attention. John looked upon Him as He walked (v 36) and called upon those who had been following him to set their gaze upon the Lord Jesus. It would be a profitable study to go through the Gospel of John and notice the places where the Lord Jesus “walked” (see ch 4:4; 6:19, 66; 7:1; 10:23; 11:54). His was a lonely walk while here on earth.

The purpose of this writing, however, is more to occupy you with the Person of Christ and to urge all of us to make it our goal to “Behold the Lamb,” to look upon Him daily in the Gospels and to appreciate Him increasingly in our lives.

As we think of places where the lamb is found in various references of Scripture, it enhances the value of Him to our souls. First and foremost, we must remember that He was the Lamb “foreordained before the foundation of the world” (1 Pet 1:20). In the heart of God eternally, there was this great plan of salvation for us. To accomplish it, the One Who shared glory before the world was (John 17:5), and Who was loved by the Father before the world was (John 17:24), is now set apart, before the world was, to be my Lamb. 

Next, the lamb was found among the flock. He, in like manner took flesh and blood and dwelt among us. He came to where we were. He took true human nature, but not fallen human nature. As we look at His life, His movements among men, we trace the purity of His motives, the selflessness of His manner, the gentleness of the means He would employ in His service to men. We see a Lamb whose head and energy were pure – His mind and His movements; We see a Lamb whose inward parts and legs are spotless and flawless – His motives and His manner all open for the delight of the eye and heart of God.

But the Lamb in the flock did not meet our need. The next place the lamb was found was in the fire (Ex 12). It had to experience the judgment as typified in the fire. It could not be soddened with water on that Passover occasion. Nothing was to come between the lamb and the fire. He endured the fire of divine judgment for us all.

To our great delight, we read of the Lamb in the future. The book of Revelation is full of the glory of the Lamb in the coming day. We read of the Throne of the Lamb, of the Lamb being the light of that temple above. We see the Lamb as the Leader of Praise but also as the object of our worship and universal admiration. He is worthy of all. In that day, all of the glory of God will be displayed in a Man Who will eternally have a Lamb-like character and be remembered by us as the Lamb once slain.

What of the present? The Lamb should be our food, what we feast upon. The nation of Israel observed the Passover three different times during their journey from Egypt to Canaan: in leaving Egypt behind, in living in a wilderness scene (Num 9), and in preparation for conquering the land (Josh 5:10). In a similar manner, we need to feed upon Christ to live apart from an evil world, to feed upon Him for all the trials of the way, and then to enjoy the fulness of divine blessings which God has given to us.

Deliverer, Delivered, to Deliver

Jesus the Deliverer – In type and prophecy 

I have come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land to a good and broad land, a land flowing with milk and honey – Exodus 3.8

Say therefore to the people of Israel, ‘I am the LORD, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will deliver you from slavery to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great acts of judgment. – Exodus 6.6

And in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written, “The Deliverer will come from Zion, he will banish ungodliness from

Jacob” – Romans 11.26  

Jesus Delivered

As they were gathering in Galilee, Jesus said to them, “The Son of Man is about to be delivered into the hands of men – Matthew 17.22 

“See, we are going up to Jerusalem. And the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and scribes, and they will condemn him to death and deliver him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified, and he will be raised on the third day.” – Matthew 20.18 

“You know that after two days the Passover is coming, and the Son of Man will be delivered up to be crucified.” – Matthew 26.2

“What will you give me [Judas] if I deliver him over to you?” And they paid him thirty pieces of silver. – Matthew 26.15

And they bound him and led him away and delivered him over to Pilate the governor. – Matthew 27.2

They answered him, “If this man were not doing evil, we would not have delivered him over to you.” – John 18.30

For he [Pilate] knew that it was out of envy that they had delivered him up. –Matthew 27.18 

He released the man who had been thrown into prison for insurrection and murder, for whom they asked, but he delivered Jesus over to their will. – Luke 23.25

Then he [Pilate] released for them Barabbas, and having scourged Jesus, delivered him to be crucified. – Matthew 27.26

The Anointed to His God 

The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of mysalvation, my stronghold. – Psalms 18.2

In you our fathers trusted; they trusted, and you delivered them. To you they cried and were rescued; in you they trusted and were not put to shame.  But I am a worm and not a man, scorned by mankind and despised by the people. All who see me mock me; they make mouths at me; they wag their heads; “He trusts in the LORD; let him deliver him; let him rescue him, for he delights in him!”  Yet you are he who took me from the womb; you made me trust you at my mother’s breasts. On you was I cast from my birth, and from my mother’s womb you have been my God. – Psalms 22.4-10

Deliver my soul from the sword, my precious life from the power of the dog! – Psalms 22.20

Deliver me from sinking in the mire; let me be delivered from my enemies and from the deep waters. – Psalms 69.14

The Plan and the Purpose 

This Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men.– Acts 2.23

That is why his faith [Abraham’s] was “counted to him as righteousness.” But the words “it was counted to him” were not written for his sake alone, but for ours also. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification. – Romans 4.22-25

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.  – Galatians 1.3-5 

Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery. For surely it is not angels that he helps, but he helps the offspring of Abraham. Therefore he had to be made like his brothers in every respect, so that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.– Hebrews 2.14-17

Giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.  – Colossians 1.12-14 

How you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come. – 1 Thessalonians 1.9-10

For His Disciples 

“Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. Beware of men, for they will deliver you over to courts and flog you in their synagogues, and you will be dragged before governors and kings for my sake, to bear witness before them and the Gentiles.  When they deliver you over, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say, for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour.  For it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you. Brother will deliver brother over to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death, and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. – Matthew 10.16-22 

And [Agabus] coming to us, he took Paul’s belt and bound his own feet and hands and said, “Thus says the Holy Spirit, ‘This is how the Jews at Jerusalem will bind the man who owns this belt and deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles.’” –Acts 21.11 

After three days he [Paul] called together the local leaders of the Jews, and when they had gathered, he said to them, “Brothers, though I had done nothing against our people or the customs of our fathers, yet I was delivered as a prisoner from Jerusalem into the hands of the Romans. – Acts 28.17 

He [God] delivered us [Paul] from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again. – 2 Corinthians 1.10

God and Monopoly

Refocusing and Reframing – Part 4

When you hear “monopoly” you probably think of a board game (people actually played these before video games were invented). If you have taken business courses in University, you think about large businesses, those big bad companies who tried to lower quality and raise prices out of greed. In 1890, the United States Congress passed the famous Sherman Antitrust Act designed to prevent monopolies and cartels from controlling the market and the price of commodities. The Act was strengthened by two additional pieces of legislation in 1914. Monopolies, except under very rare circumstances, are illegal.

But there is another area where a monopoly is wonderful to consider. God is called “the God of all grace” (1 Peter 5:10); He has a monopoly on grace! You will not find it anywhere else. He owns it, controls it, and dispenses it. He has set the price. His grace is free!

It would be profitable to consider the context of 1 Peter where this unique title occurs: a persecuted and suffering people. And though we would not, without blushing, think of our current circumstances as comparable to theirs, we still need grace. You need grace just to wear those horrible face masks!

There are some links with the grace needed in Peter’s day and the grace we need today. One area is that of submitting to government (1 Pet 2:13). We all are getting confused as we hear conflicting information about the current state of affairs. One news feed will tell us that we are overdoing it with “our shelter in place” orders. Then we hear from other “experts” who tell us that there is a second wave coming which will outdo the first and that we can expect a resurgence this winter. So, are we in lockdown until 2021? We are told one month that masks are useless and then we are told that we must wear one if we go into a store. That sound you hear is not a malfunctioning home appliance. It is a government drone spying on whether you are staying in or, perish the thought, looking out of your door. Yes, we need grace to submit and to do so quietly.

Wives need grace for patience with husbands who are home and climbing the walls (1 Pet 3:1-5). There is no creature known to man so restless as a caged husband! Mothers need grace for children who are home from school and “homeschooling” via computer. Any suggestions on how to keep a hyperactive child in front of the computer screen would be welcomed by a number of mothers.

We all need grace for day to day stability. We need grace for mental calm amidst so much calculated to create anxiety (turn off the news feeds) as Peter tells us (1 Pet 5:7). Is there a conspiracy to keep us all in a state of perpetual frustrated expectations?Grace is available but there is only one place to get it. He is the God of ALL grace. You can come and receive the grace you need by abiding under the shadow of His wing … but do not forget the mask and do not open the door if you hear the drone overhead.

Costly Worship

John 12:1-8

How much does it cost to worship the Savior? I am not talking about a monetary cost, but a cost in time or energy. Worship, true worship, is the desire of every believer. To lift up the Savior in word and deed – to speak well of Him in our daily conversation – is our ultimate goal. So how much will it cost?

Mary shows us an example of the true cost of worship.  Notice:

  • The Cost of the Ointment
  • The Choice Mary Made
  • The Center of Her Worship

The Cost of the Ointment

The Scriptures remind us: “Then took Mary a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus …” (John 12:3). Much has been written and can be said about the monetary cost of the ointment – three hundred pence, close to one year’s worth of wages. Something of so much value was poured out upon the Lord Jesus Christ. It speaks to me of giving Christ our all, no matter the cost. Worship should not be a mindless, effortless operation we perform. It should be an outpouring of a prepared heart, given to honor the One who is worthy. Notice also that “the house was filled with the odor of the ointment.” True worship has a sweet fragrance to God and to others.

The Choice Mary Made

Taking a look at the characters mentioned here, we can glean something of the bold choice that Mary made to worship. “Martha served,” as we often read of her doing (see Luke 10). “Lazarus was one of those reclining with him at the table” in fellowship with Christ. These are two important roles that every believer can have. We must serve Christ in our everyday lives and fellowship with Christ is vital in our Christian walk. Mary had a choice to make. What role would she play? “Mary…anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped His feet with her hair.” She chose to worship Him in her service (anointing His feet) and in her fellowship (a connection with the Savior).

The Center of Her Worship

There was something about the Lord Jesus Christ that caused a desire within her to lavish her love upon Him. Christ reminds us in Luke 7 of the one who “loved much” because of the many sins that have been forgiven. How could she not worship the One who brings forgiveness? Worship, therefore, brings an intimacy with the Savior. We realize and honor His position in our lives and serve him with our words and deeds. Mary anointed the feet of the Savior. We are reminded of Paul, quoting Isaiah, “How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!” (Rom 10:15). Mary appreciated the Savior and wanted to do something that would honor Him!
Worship includes reverence, love, and devotion – all witnessed in Mary’s act. It was a service that did not go unnoticed, as Christ himself could say, “Let her alone: against the day of my burying hath she kept this.” It was costly worship. It was an example to every one of us, dear believer, to evaluate our own worship. How much does it cost you to worship the Savior?

Pleasing God

Without faith, it is impossible to please Him” Hebrews 11:6

How ye ought to walk and to please God” 1 Thess 4:1

With such sacrifices God is well pleased” Hebrews 13:16

There are numerous places where we are told what pleases God. In his exhortation to the Thessalonians, Paul reminded them that holiness brings pleasure to God. Amidst the immoral and lax society of Macedonia, Paul told them that to walk counter-culture by a life of moral purity was pleasing to God.

The writer to the Hebrew believers, in encouraging them in a life of faith rather than law, encased in Hebrews 11 the maxim for life: faith pleases God. And then in summing up the truth of living by faith, he reminded them in chapter 13 that even though the work of Christ had put an end to sacrifices, there are sacrifices even today which bring pleasure to God. “The sacrifice of praise … to do good and communicate forget not for with such sacrifices God is well pleased” (Heb 13:15, 16).

Holiness, faith, thanksgiving, and doing good to others pleases God. While these exhortations are very practical and applicable to us, and while we need to grow and develop in each of them, there was a Man here Who embodied them all.

One great contrast is that He did not grow in His holiness, develop in His life of faith, be reminded of the need for thanksgiving, or learn to do good to others. All of this was abiding in Him and abundant in Him.

He gave thanks amidst the most negative of circumstances (Matt 11:25). In the upper room, He gave thanks for the emblems and for the reality of what they represented. He sang with His own as they left the upper room and worshiped the God Whom He served. “Thou art My God I will exalt Thee; O give thanks unto the Lord for He is good” (Ps 118:28, 29). And then upon the cross, there went up the spirit of worship from the heart of Christ: “But Thou art holy” as He justified the hand that was smiting Him.

He did not have to learn to do good and communicate. “He went about doing good” is the record of the Spirit of God. And again, “He hath done all things well.” There was never idle time, no “me-time” in His life. Even when weary, He would use it as an opportunity to reach a thirsty Samaritan woman at a well. Upon the cross, He continued to do good as He cared for His mother and for a thief. What pleasure that brought to God.

No refinement toward holiness was ever needed. He was “that holy thing” born to Mary. Demons owned Him as holy. A centurion, observer of countless crucifixions confessed, “This was a righteous man.” And the Spirit of God adds in Hebrews 7 that He is holy! His holiness brought delight to His Father.

In Hebrews 11, after establishing the principle that faith brings pleasure to God, and after parading before our view the great heroes and heroines of faith, every eye is turned to behold another. “Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of faith.” It is not “the finisher of our faith” as in our A.V. It is rather that He is the ultimate example of the life of faith. From the moment He left heaven’s portals with the words, “Lo, I come to do Thy will,” He lived a life of faith, putting into everyday life that principles of the Word of God in His life. He lived by faith every moment of His sojourn here below. Faith for Him was not, as some would claim a leap in the dark, it was living His life in the light of the Word and will of God.His holiness, faith, thankful spirit, and doing good all meant that here was a life to which the Father could testify: “This is My beloved Son in Whom is all My delight.”

Thy Will Be Done

A meditation on the Lord’s prayer in Gethsemane

My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.” (Matthew 26.39)

Why did our Lord Jesus pray thus in Gethsemane?

He knew His Father’s will and was always determined to fulfill it, continually and unwaveringly. To this the Scriptures witness in abundance… 

In John’s record, the cross is forefront in His thinking from beginning to end throughout His manifestation: 

It was in His own words before His first sign: 

         “My hour has not yet come” (John 2.4). 

And when the time drew near: 

The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit… Now is my soul troubled. And what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But for this purpose I have come to this hour. Father, glorify your name” (John 12.23-28). 

And before Gethsemane: 

         “Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you” (John 17.1)

The lengthiest section of Luke’s record spans from Luke 9.51: 

         “When the days drew near for Him to be taken up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem” 

To Luke 19.41:

         “When He drew near and saw the city” 

There portraying Jesus’ final journey to Jerusalem, not necessarily a direct journey in geographical terms, but with unmistakable deliberateness: 

He sent messengers ahead of him, who went and entered a village of the Samaritans, to make preparations for him. But the people did not receive him, because his face was set toward Jerusalem” (Luke 9.52-53).

Likewise in Matthew, when Jesus reaches what is probably the place farthest north and away from Jerusalem, it’s then that: 

[North of Israel, in Caesarea Philippi] “Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised” (Matthew 16.21) 

There the long southward journey to the cross starts; not a visit due to a feast of the Jews, as was His custom, but a deliberate journey to His Scriptural destiny, through which He prepared His afraid disciples accordingly:

[South of Caesarea Philippi] “As they were gathering in Galilee, Jesus said to them [the disciples], “The Son of Man is about to be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill Him, and He will be raised on the third day.” And they were greatly distressed.” (Matthew 17.22-23)

[South of Galilee, already in Judea] “As Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, he took the twelve disciples aside, and on the way he said to them, ‘See, we are going up to Jerusalem. And the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and scribes, and they will condemn him to death and deliver him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified, and he will be raised on the third day.’” (Matthew 20.17-19) 

[And already in Jerusalem] “He said to his disciples, ‘You know that after two days the Passover is coming, and the Son of Man will be delivered up to be crucified… Go into the city to a certain man and say to him, ‘The Teacher says, my time is at hand.’’” (Matthew 26.1-2, 18)

Also His certainty on the complete fulfillment of the Scriptures is evident that very fateful night:

And as they were eating, he said, ‘Truly, I say to you, one of you will betray me… The Son of Man goes as it is written of him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed!’” (Matthew 26.21-24)

Jesus said to them, “You will all fall away because of me this night. For it is written, ‘I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.’ But after I am raised up, I will go before you to Galilee.”” (Matthew 26.31-32)

At that hour Jesus said to the crowds, “Have you come out as against a robber, with swords and clubs to capture me? Day after day I sat in the temple teaching, and you did not seize me. But all this has taken place that the Scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled.” Then all the disciples left him and fled.” (Matthew 26.55-56)

Why then did He pray thus “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.“? (Matthew 26.39) 

We are standing on “holy ground”, in the presence of the “Holy One” and “True God”, and “who is sufficient for these things?” But can we consider a thought about this, even if inaccurate, or too human, yet profitable for us in knowing Him, loving Him and emulating Him better?

At Gethsemane we peer into His soul. It’s a unique disclosure in the record. The written hour has come, and the majestic Christ’s inner being is deeply moved:

         “He began to be sorrowful and troubled.”  (Matthew 26.37)

         “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.” (Matthew 26.38)

And at the least by way of application to us, in human identification with Him, as Christians, we could think this way: In a difficult hour, when distress has come, but it’s not to settle in the heart: 

God, you are my Father, my loving and all-caring Father. 

You can be trusted completely in all circumstances, and all things are possible for you, even now.

Above all I want that your will be done. This may not[1] be taken away from me. 

I do recoil at the event to come. My Father: Can this be taken away from me?

But I want your will done, not mine!

And there appeared to Him an angel from Heaven, strengthening Him.” (Luke 22.43)

Again, for the second time, he went away and prayed, “My Father, if this cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done.”  (Matthew 26.42)

In your strength I am determined to carry out your will.

For this reason I pray to you intently, because I want your will done.

May you be honored in me, whether by life or by death.

Therefore I pray to you in this hour: “Your will be done”

My Father!

The disciples at Gethsemane ought to have prayed that they may not enter into temptation, but the holy Lord Jesus could not be tempted to sin. Yet He experienced sorrows and distress, like we do, and thus, He experienced the sorrow of this tremendous hour. What should be done then?

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”  (Philippians 4.6).

Let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.”  (1 Peter 4.19)

The time at Gethsemane is ended. The majestic Christ is no longer prostrate, but leading the events to come. The cross is still ahead. And He continues His journey to it, and He’s not going to let any of the Scriptures fall to the ground: “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work.” (John 4.34)

In that very same place the Lord Jesus says to His disciples:

         “Rise, let us be going; see, my betrayer is at hand” (Matthew 26.46)

And to the betrayer:

         “Friend, do what you came to do.” (Matthew 26.50)

And to the impulsive disciple:

“Put your sword back into its place… Do you think that I cannot appeal to my Father, and he will at once send me more than twelve legions of angels? But how then should the Scriptures be fulfilled, that it must be so?” (Matthew 26.52-54)

And to the “arresting” crowds: 

All this has taken place that the Scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled’. (Then all the disciples left him and fled)” (Matthew 26.56)

And later on, to the earthly judge:

 “He gave him no answer, not even to a single charge, so that the governor was greatly amazed” (Matthew 27.14)

And to the great multitude of the people and of women who were mourning and lamenting for him:

Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves” (Luke 23.28)

Nevertheless we understand that Gethsemane was not the end: the cross He faced completely. In another unique disclosure of the travail of His soul, we hear the cry that still pierces through the soul of each individual cleansed by His precious blood:

         “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matthew 27.46, Mark 15.34)

And we worship Him who in unshakable trust and obedience to the Father, came from above, endured the cross, glorified His Father, saved our souls, and went back where He was before:

Fatherinto your hands I commit my spirit!” (Luke 23.46)

[1] Christ could have said “this cannot be taken away from me”.

He Was a Man of Sorrows

His sorrows arose for many reasons.

He was a perfectly holy Man in a sinful world. Everywhere He looked He saw the fruit of sin.

He alone could measure the full tragedy as He could look past the forced smiles and steeled faces of men and see the sorrows overwhelming hearts.

He alone never become accustomed to sin as we do; He was never hardened or indifferent.

He alone saw what men were missing by not knowing HIs Father; that grieved His heart.

He alone knew all that God was being deprived of – the love, devotion, and worship of men.

He alone could measure the long history of tears which have drenched this globe.

He alone knew the ultimate end of those whom He moved amongst, the dreadful eternity.All this caused Him sorrow.

And then the cross: “My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death.”

And perhaps among the greatest sorrow was the fact that He had no one on earth with whom to share His sorrow.

No one understood; no one offered compassion or sympathy.

He bore it all alone

Sorrows abounding.
Beyond human sounding,
Darkness surrounding
Low He prayed and wept
Deep were they sleeping
Who watch should have kept
While He with weeping
prayed while they slept