The Silence of the Cross
Proverbs 23: 7 reminds us that as a man thinks, so is he. Some people might argue that the context restricts this application but the Lord supports this as a general statement in Matthew 15: 18-20. It is very important for every Christian to fill their minds with thoughts of the Lord Jesus Christ. Isaiah 53 gives us a picture of the Lord’s life, looking forward. It is so amazing accurate.
- I am always amazed when I read of the Lord Jesus that He was dumb, like a sheep before her shearers and that He didn’t open His mouth during the time that He was taken away to be crucified.
- I am reminded of John 9: 59 when I think of the Lord Jesus being led away by His enemies to be crucified. At that stage His enemies took up stones to stone Him but he hid himself from them and went out of the Temple. If He was able to hide Himself from them at that stage, why didn’t He slip away when the Jews and their soldiers met Him outside the garden at Gethsemane? If we read through the gospels we can see that He was able to slip away from His enemies more than once because it wasn’t the right time for Him to die.
- On top of this we can look at other times when the Lord God chose not to remain dumb in the face of sin and see what happened:
- The first time we hear about the Lord opening His mouth to speak was during the creation period; we hear “and God said…”, “and it was so.” At that time, we know from John 1, the Word spoke the creative words. When He spoke the worlds came into being. He is not just the God of the earth but He is the Lord of the universe. The massive universe that is far to large for our minds to contain, let alone understand, came into being when the Lord spoke. We know that the Lord rested on the seventh day, after the universe was created and it was very good. However He didn’t rest because He was tired, He rested because He was finished, there was nothing more for Him to do as the universe was perfect and complete. He took six days to create the entire universe in grace, for our benefit, not because He needed to take that amount of time.
- The next time we hear about God’s spoken word is at the Fall. God called out to Adam and Eve after they had sinned and asked them where they were, He already knew exactly what had happened but He called to them in grace so that they would have a chance to own the fact that they had sinned by disobeying His command. However, they chose not to take advantage of His grace and suffered the consequences.
- The Lord spoke in judgement against the serpent, Adam and Eve. He condemned the serpent to crawl upon its belly and to eat dust every day of its life. To this day all snakes crawl on their bellies and they taste the dust as part of the daily routine. The Lord also condemned the serpent to enmity with the woman’s seed and there has always been war between the serpent, that is, Satan, and those who follow the Lord. It is also true that the Lord Christ battled Satan and bruised his head to such an extent that He will never recover from the effects of that battle.
- The Lord spoke to the woman and cursed her to sorrow in childbirth and there is sorrow in childbirth for every woman to this day. He also condemned Adam to work hard all the days of his life to live and that he would return to the dust until these things happened. They were also told that on the day they ate of the fruit of the tree they would surely die. On that day they immediately experienced spiritual death and they began the long, slow, irreversible process of physical death. To this day, mankind has tried to work out ways of cheating physical death but has been unable to do so.
- Before long Adam’s descendants began to sin so much that the Lord decided that He would destroy the earth with a flood. In this case the Lord was gracious and gave Noah warning to build the ark about one hundred years before He brought the flood onto the earth. However, in this case, the Lord said that He would destroy the earth with a flood and He did destroy the earth with a flood.
- When Noah came out of the ark the Lord put a rainbow in the sky and promised Noah “while the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.” From that day to this there has always been day and night, summer and winter, etc. The Lord spoke and His word has remained true to this day.
- After the tower of Babel, the Lord called Abraham and promised him that he would bless him and his family forever. After a while Abraham asked the Lord how he would become the father of a great nation as he had no son of his own. The Lord told Abraham that he would definitely have a son but he also told him that his descendants would be slaves in Egypt for four hundred years and then they would be set free from slavery and come out of that place with great wealth. All these things came true, exactly as the Lord said that they would.
- After Israel was freed from the land of slavery they were given the Law and told to take possession of the Land that the Lord had promised them. After they sent spies to look through the Land they decided that they were afraid to take the Land because there were giants in the Land. The Lord told them that they would spend forty years in the wilderness until all the people who refused to go into the Land died for their sins and this happened.
- The next generation went into the Land as the Lord promised but they agreed to the covenant of the Land before they went in. Part of the covenant involved keeping the Law and they agreed that they would be sent into exile if they didn’t keep the Law. After many years of disobedience the Lord sent them away into exile. Before He sent them into exile He promised that they would be in exile for seventy years and after seventy years a remnant returned to the Land, just as the Lord promised.
- When the Lord Jesus was alive on the earth, He was able to command storms to stop and at one stage He told a legion of demons to return to the pit and they did what He told them to do.
- In Revelation 19:21 we read that the Lord Jesus will slay the largest army ever gathered on the earth with the sword that comes out of His mouth and that sword is the the Word of God.
- However, when the Lord Jesus was arrested outside the garden of Gethsemane He remained silent. We know that that the Word of God is the most powerful weapon in the Universe but the Lord didn’t use that sword to defend Himself. He had twelve legions of angels waiting to deliver Him but He didn’t call on them.
- Matthew 18: 11 tells us that the Son of Man had come to seek and save the lost. He didn’t make any effort to save Himself at that time because He was saving us from our sin.
- Before the Lord Jesus became a man He was already God so He didn’t come to this earth for His own benefit. He was here to save us because we could do nothing to save ourselves.
There are many people who tell us that it is important for us to love ourselves if we want to serve God but this is exactly the opposite to what the Bible commands. The Lord wants us to be so full of appreciation for His love that we forget ourselves entirely. When we take time to consider the Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of the universe, and what a great price He paid for our salvation we will be filled with amazement at His greatness and His love. If He had chosen to He could have saved Himself but He chose to save us and give us eternal life instead. He spent those long dark hours on the cross, where He experienced all the torments of Hell and the He died because we are sinners. We have nothing to offer Him but He loves us anyway and will keep us forever, by the power of His Word.