Normally, all I have time for on Wednesday is a "Wordless Post" with some photographs, but today, I am at work a "little" earlier than usual and thought I would try to pound this post out before time to start working.
I started reading a new (to me) book called "The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism by Timothy Keller". I haven't gotten very far yet, but further than I thought I would because I'll be honest I am NOT a reader.
The book was suggested to me by my brother-in-law S. He has suggested books to me in the past and I have loved each one. One book that I have read multiple times is the "Psychology of Everyday Things by Donald A. Norman" and it has really helped me in the part of my job where I design things. If you design anything, whether it is a web-site or a blog or even rearranging your living room, I would suggest this book. For me the book showed me how a simple door handle makes the human brain automatically decide whether to push or pull. Design deserves your thoughtful consideration and if something as simple as a door handle makes a person think a specific way, more time and consideration should be taken when designing some of the things for which I am responsible.
So, like I said I am reading this new book, and if you have curiosity like me, I'm sure you clicked the video on Amazon.com and listened to the "reason" for the book by the author. (If you didn't go ahead and click the link above and then listen to the author tell you why he wrote the book. . . . it's okay we'll wait.)
Glad you are back.
So I am riding down the road reading this book I downloaded on my (sorry Santa's) iPad, and well it really stopped me in my tracks at this one point.
Chapter Two: How Could A Good God Allow Suffering
(pretty deep stuff, huh?)
The author is explaining that God did not thrust suffering on to mankind, but came to earth in the person of Jesus Christ and experienced it.
Now, ladies (and gentlemen) I have heard this my ENTIRE life. I went to church before I was born and when I had only been here 2 weeks I was back in church. . . .so when I say my entire life I am not kidding. I have heard the story about how God became man and came to the world to save us all from our sins. Everyone knows the bible verse. . . go ahead and say it with me. . . . 'For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16'
But the author is explaining that Jesus did not experience death the way we humans do after all. I am interested at this point, because . . . come on . . .He is God. But the author points out that Jesus has been with God from the beginning. He and God were one at the creation, throughout the trials of Job and the 40 years of wilderness with Moses. Jesus was WITH God.
Keller is explaining that Jesus knew he was going to be crucified, and that unlike many of the other prophets of major religions, Jesus asked if there was any other way.
Going a little ahead, he fell to the ground and prayed for a way out: "Papa, Father, you can—can't you?—get me out of this. Take this cup away from me. But please, not what I want—what do you want?"
In order for Jesus to take on the sins of the world and pay the price for us, Jesus had to be separated from God. God cannot look on sin, much less look at His Son covered in sin.
THIS thought stopped me!
Jesus has been with God since BEFORE the beginning an eternity in the past, and now has to be sep . . . ar . . . . ated . . . . from . . . . God. Hello? That just hit me like a truck for some reason.
When I saw the movie The Passion of the Christ I thought about what Jesus went through on the cross in order for me to be able to have eternal life. But there is no way that any human can understand what it must be like in that moment that Jesus was separated from God for the first time . . . this death is VERY different from what we experience.
The author compares Jesus' death to the death of martyrs who face death with such bravery and never waiver in their faith even while being burned alive. And I thought that their death was greatly minimized by this new thought of Jesus' death. These martyr's HAVE the Holy Spirit with them EVEN IN DEATH. They had the hope that Jesus provides while they were going through the worst. We do not have to be separated from God when we die. If we truly believe we can find comfort through our worst trials . . . because . . . .Jesus died FOR us.
See what I mean . . . whoa!
The only thing that comes close (and it really doesn't even scratch the surface) is how you feel when you are the victim of divorce, or if your spouse dies, or if your child dies. These don't even compare to the amount of time that Jesus was with God before the crucifixion. Even a couple married 75 years can't compare to an eternity.
. . .
. . . so I'll keep reading and let you know what I find out. If you have read the book, let me know what you thought of it. If you haven't read the book, check back in a few weeks to see what else I have discovered.
1. Brother-in-law and sister have moved (and are still in the process of moving), pray that my two nieces will make lots of new friends to fill in the hole left from leaving ALL their old friends behind.
2. Bit O Honey back home from an overnight stay and having contractions again. Please pray that the little one continues to grow and get stronger before coming into this world.
3. Fourth of July Bash! At our house we won't be having fireworks due to the burn ban, but I know some people will ignore it and pray that no one is seriously hurt. Also that everyone traveling stays safe and protected by God's hand.