The Lenten Season – Day 37

Christ knows that he will be betrayed. He is about to be handed over to those who have it in for him. And tomorrow night, he will pray a prayer: Let this cup pass from me. Jesus dreads his death. He begs to be rescued. This can be easy to forget because we know the ending and because he accepts what he receives, when he is sure it is his to receive, in such astonishing quietness.

But God has given us, and Jesus shares, a good, natural resistance to death, pain, and suffering. Who could feel the wrongs of death more than the one “through whom all things exist” (Hebrews 2:10)? Just as a Lenten fast is not about giving up something bad (which can be done anytime), but about temporarily setting aside something good and natural, so Jesus finishes laying down his life, including his ability to preserve and defend it, perfecting his obedience and letting the Father bring whatever result he will.

Rather than an embrace of destruction or a suicide mission, Christians throughout history have seen Christ’s Passion as medicine. In order to restore us to life, Jesus cries out, “O LORD, do not delay!” not only for himself but also on behalf of all of us. And the answer he receives is to be, for us, that very savior he cries for and to trust the Father, beyond all hope, to be his.

Inhabit (a devotional journal for Lent by Dwell)

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