Just a little over 10 weeks left before we are done with the Bible 365 Challenge! I can hardly believe it y'all. I'm beyond excited. I was toying with the idea of speeding things up and finishing the it faster. The New Testament isn't nearly as long as the Old Testament. But I've decided to just stick with the reading plan.
In Week 38, we read about the build up to the crucifixion of Jesus, how he was betrayed and the crucifixion and rising of Christ. It's crazy to see how fast people turned on Jesus even after all he did for them. Despite having seen him give sight to the blind, bring people back from the dead and cast out demon spirits. these people still betrayed him, mocked him and demanded his death. And they took pleasure in watching him die.
I don't how Mary, his mother, did it. She stood in the crowd and watched (probably weeping uncontrollably) as her son bled, was spat on (Matthew 26:67-68) and teased until his spirit finally ascended into Heaven. I don't think I would have been strong enough to do that. She knew that this was God's will and I certainly think that God gave her the strength needed to not do anything to interfere with what was suppose to happen.
Could you imagine how torturing it would be first be given this miracle baby only to find out he's going to have to die for a bunch of ungrateful people so that their sins can be forgiven? Could you wake up day in and day out wondering if that was going to be the day your son would be executed? If ever there was a mom deserving of the Mom of the Year Award, is Mary! And let's not forget about poor Joseph. He might not have been Jesus' real father but he was his earth father and I imagine he wasn't exactly handling this revelation well either.
What dad would be able to stomach knowing his first son was going to eventually die? Reading about the crucifixion always makes a bit frustrated. Why? I just don't like it that Jesus had to die. He was such a great man. It frustrates me that these people couldn't get their lives together and stay in God's will.
Why did the Israelites constantly lose their faith and betray God? I mean they saw miracles performed first hand. They didn't have to read about them like we do now with the Bible. They had front row seats to the parting of the Red Sea and water flowing out of rocks in the middle of the wilderness.
Aside from the whole crucifixion, I also learned that while a lot of people use the excuse now days that Moses was given the right to grant Christians the right to get a divorce without consequence that doesn't hold true anymore. In Matthew 19:8-10 the people ask Jesus about this very issue and he replies "Moses, because of the hardness of your hearts, permitted you to divorce your wives, bur from the beginning it was not so. And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery; and whoever marries her who is divorced commits adultery."
This right here is why we need to start teaching our children about the sacredness that is marriage. No matter how much the government tries to make marriage a governmental thing, for us Christians we need to remember that we take a vow before God when we marry. And that vow cannot be broken no matter what a piece paper from the judge says. We will be held accountable for that.
I'm so glad that the Mr and I went through so much before we tied the knot because it really made us step back think if we could be with each other until we die. I don't believe in divorce and neither does my husband with the exception of sexual immorality/cheating. And I think that if you can't go through all the worst possible scenarios in your mind that could happen and still come to the conclusion that you would stay with your spouse then you should take the advice that his disciples had to offer in Matthew 19:10 saying "If such is the case of the man with his wife, it is better not to marry."
Marriage isn't for everyone and that's ok. Also, another verse that I'm going to continue to mediate on is Matthew 21:22: "And whatever things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive." I know that it gets hard to keep the faith, but we often have not even after we've asked because we don't believe. We ask in doubt and God doesn't work in doubt. He needs us to know that He is able to deliver!
Lastly, once you betray people, you can't take the betrayal back. Judas realized as he watched the treatment Jesus was getting that he had a huge mistake and tried to give back the 30 pieces of silver aka Blood Money but the high priest wouldn't take it back. What was done was done. They had already arrested Jesus, spat in his face, and assaulted him. So, they were going to move forward and kill him too.
That guilt and remorse was too much for Judas to live with so he took his own life. I would like to think that if Judas could see that in hindsight by betraying Jesus for 30 pieces of silver, he actually put his own life at risk. This is why the Bible says that money is the root of all evil. People will do anything to get it without thinking. Then afterwards is when the remorse and reality of their actions set in but it's too late.
Have you ever been betrayed by a friend or loved one?
Week 39 Readings
9/23: Mark 10
9/24: Mark 11-12
9/25: Mark 13
9/26: Mark 14-16
9/27: Luke 1-4
9/28: Luke 4-6
9/29: Luke 7-9