Tuesday, June 15, 2004

"My God, My God..."

A little eisegesis (personal interpretation, right?) for your Tuesday afternoon.

If you have some level of basic Biblical knowledge, you are aware that Jesus, while suffering on the cross, said something like "my God, my God, why have you abandoned/forsaken me?" If you have had any further training, you should have been informed that this is actually a quote from Psalm 22:1. I've heard a lot of Biblical scholar-types discuss how David is in fact prophesying the words of Christ, being moved by the Spirit to do so. Indeed, the whole chapter can be lined up with the actual events surrounding the crucifixion, either explicitly or figuratively.

But consider this also: Jesus, being perfect, did not start cursing God and spewing anger at those around him, when any of us would likely have done so in that situation. Instead, Jesus used the Bible to express what he was going through, and in doing so he fulfilled prophesy.

God has really been confronting me with the power of words recently. The Bible talks about how the power of life and death is in the tongue, and how we cannot take that lightly, since we will all be held accountable for every careless word we've said. Some of you may not know, but I kinda developed a profanity habit in college, and though I've made attempts to quell that, it keeps coming back. And I've really been convicted by the fact that there needs to be no place for it in my life.

So as I have been thinking of all this, I came across the Crucifixion story. Jesus was able to use the Bible to express himself in any situation. Whether in good times or bad.

What I'm trying to say is, we tend to wrongly think that the Bible can't apply to every area of life, to every season, every situation. When we are faced with dark times, when we despair, we shrug off Scripture, thinking that all it will give us are trite sayings (like so many of our fellow believers do). But the fact is that God understands our frustration, loneliness, and despair; and books like Job, Psalms, Ecclesiastes, and Lamentations prove that. These are real emotions that need to be dealt with squarely. And the Bible, contrary to our assumptions, doesn't sidestep dark times and sad hearts. It confronts them. It examines them. And it finally gives hope for them.

And I think that's pretty freakin rad.

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