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  • Writer's pictureMatt Beaney

#1026. His wounds, our healing (3/4/24)

This week, following on from Easter, I want to reflect on the centrality of the cross. Today we think about how Jesus’ death leads to our healing.  

‘He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain. Like one from whom people hide their faces he was despised, and we held him in low esteem. Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.’ (Isaiah 53:3-6)

Lesson: Jesus’ death on the cross was Him taking the punishment for our sin and by His wounds we are healed. 


You can listen to this devotional below:



Some 700 years before that first Easter, Isaiah prophesies about the suffering of Jesus who took on the punishment for our sins. It can be difficult to understand why Jesus had to die such a brutal death on the cross. However, Isaiah 53:3-6 reminds us that he was despised, rejected, and stricken by God. He took on our iniquities and sins, bearing the punishment that we deserved. Through his wounds, we are healed. In this text, we are taught about the substitutionary nature of Jesus’ death. Tim Keller writes of how Jesus bore the penalty for our sin:

‘The essence of sin is we human beings substituting ourselves for God; while the essence of salvation is God substituting himself for us. We… put ourselves where only God deserves to be; God…puts himself where only we deserve to be.’ (Tim Keller, The Reason for God)

To understand that first Good Friday, we must look beyond the physical pain and suffering of the cross and see the spiritual significance of Christ's death. The crucifixion was not just a random act of violence, but a deliberate and purposeful sacrifice that was necessary for our salvation. On the cross, we hear Jesus cry out, using the words of Psalm 22,

‘About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eli, lema sabachthani?” (which means “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”).’ (Matthew 27:46) 

Jesus was forsaken by His Father, not in the sense that He was no longer loved, but He came under the judicial wrath of God as He took on our sin. All of the sin of all the Christians in history were laid upon Him and judged as His upon the cross. In Jesus’ substitutionary death we are reminded of the incredible love and grace of God. Despite our sin and rebellion, he chose to send His Son to die in our place, offering us forgiveness and redemption.


Response

Jesus’ death on the cross was Him taking the punishment for our sin and by His wounds we are healed. Let us take time to reflect on the sacrifice of Jesus and the depth of his love for us. His wounds are our hope of healing. The healing of our broken relationship with God is the main idea that Isaiah is pointing to. Yes, we can pray for healing and it is by the sacrifice of Christ that this is made possible. However, today, we focus on the healing of the chasm of sin that laid between us and God. Are you healed? Are you living in the joy of redemption? 


 

COMMUNITY GROUP NOTES AND STUDY

There are no notes for this week. However, if you are meeting, feel free to use this Easter Sunday devotional as a basis for your study and discussion together.

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