Friday, April 3, 2015

Just Who Has the Ambition to Die?

Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
— Luke 23:34
Ambition seems a much secularised word.
Every actor in the pantomime of Jesus’ Passion had no idea what they were doing: Peter ran from the one who he should have run to. Judas gave his Lord away for a pittance. Pilate reluctantly, and ambivalently, gave into all the peer pressure. Herod ridiculed Jesus’ ‘magic’. Pilate’s soldiers were callous and chiding.
Nobody knew what God was doing. And still so many people in our day are clueless.
Ambition is such a selfish kind of word, unless, we reconfigure our understanding, in the light of Jesus’ Passion. The root of the word “passion” (passio, late Latin) means “to suffer.”
To suffer was Jesus’ ambition. To suffer whatever it took to die on the cross. To suffer, for you; for me.
To suffer such a death; an ambition. His will? No, but His Father’s. But, His Father’s will came quickly to be His own in line with His own teaching.
***
Why is this Friday ‘good’?
God did for us what we could and can never do for ourselves. Jesus restored us to the Father in His Passion (His suffering). We can be at peace with God!
That first ‘good’ Friday instituted the imminent coming of Christ’s Kingdom; it represents the defeat of Satan and death to all his power to divide us from God; and, it precedes the resurrection, for there is no resurrection without the cross.
Just WHO has an ‘ambition’ to die for others? Yet, that’s the cross; His and ours!
What we must ask ourselves is, just who has an ambition to die?
***
He came for just one reason
To endure humankind’s treason
To a cross He was nailed
Eternally He is hailed
His passion; His mission
His destiny; His ambition
***
Good Friday is good for one reason: we are reconciled to God because of the cross.
Nothing else intuits goodness over such a day. But everything about the day is good!
Just who has an ambition to die?
A Christ follower.
A disciple of Christ follows by way of their Lord’s example. And what an example! Is anyone, on their conversion, shown the passages of Christ’s passion and their personal conviction to such a life?
It is a distasteful thought to imagine just what we are saved for: death to this life so that the eternal life may reflect through us.
Distasteful, yet glorious. Hideous, yet beautiful. Aloneness, yet secure.
A death of a life so that a life may begin again.
© 2015 S. J. Wickham.

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