Today’s re-post is another fantastically-penned-truth from Becky Johnson – Enjoy!
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Good morning, tribe!
It was something a preacher said the other day that slapped me in the face at the same time it whispered in my heart: this is true. That’s the thing about Jesus truth, it gets under your skin even as it comforts you. Or maybe it does the first before it does the latter.
“Upon His resurrection He did not have retaliation in mind.”
In a world that is hell bent on getting even with anyone and anything that has ever done us wrong, it’s a shock to hear of Jesus’ life and commands to us.
Think about it: He became sin (so that in Him we might be made the righteousness of God. 2 Corinthians 5:21). All the dirty, rotten, filthy, perverted, and horrific things of all humankind. He became those things. He was beaten to a bloody pulp. He was taunted and laughed at. He was crucified. But as Scripture promises, He is raised from the dead on the third day. He has conquered sin and death once and for all (let me repeat that…once and for all). After all of that He does not have retaliation in mind. It is downright boggling and crazy and…beautiful. Jesus isn’t emerging from the tomb hell bent on getting even with us. All His life Jesus knew stuff those around Him didn’t know, couldn’t know, or it wasn’t time for them to know. One of my favorite quotes on Jesus is from the book “In The Footsteps of Jesus, One Man’s Journey” written by Bruce Marchiano.
“Jesus had no need to maintain some poise, trying to impress people with His holiness. He had no insecurities and His holiness certainly wasn’t wrapped up in outward appearances (read that line again, please). He had nothing to prove and no reason to hold back. He was God and He had no problem fully being who He fully was and fully living what He fully felt, every full moment of every full day.”
Gracious, Lord! That’s good!!
Jesus knew who He was. He knew where He came from. He knew to Whom He was returning.
This. Changes. Everything.
What would happen to our need to retaliate if we knew who we were (the righteousness of God in Christ) and to Whom we are returning upon our deaths (no matter what kind of death that may be)? This isn’t some self-will powered mumbo jumbo. This isn’t if you’d only do better and be better then you, too, could be like Jesus. That’s the slickest lie of religion. We cannot and never could be like Jesus. This is about knowing (believing and trusting) who we are. This is about trusting the life of Christ that dwells in us right now. And having the grace and courage to live and love from that Life.
As John Lynch has often said as if Jesus is speaking, “I’ve got your back, kid.”
If He has our back, where is our need to retaliate? It is with His need to retaliate…absent. This is true freedom and peace beyond human understanding that nothing in this world can touch or take away.
Much grit and grace to us all on our days journey.
In reckless love and rebellious freedom,