As I mentioned in last week's post, The Power of Christ In You, the group that came to arrest Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane was between 300 and 600 men. This is no small force, this is an army! These soldiers were aware of the power of Christ, and he showed it that night! But of course, he knew that it was the Father's will for him to die for us. So he gave himself up. The soldiers took him and brought him to the elders and the chief priests (Matthew 26:57).
At the time, the elders and the chief priests were trying to find some false witnesses to testify against Jesus (v. 59). They find many who will, and then they ask Jesus if he is the Son of God. Then he confirms, and they find Jesus guilty of blasphemy. Then, they started to spit in his face. In the devotion, it talks about how this was the most disrespectful thing you could possibly do to someone. It was meant to humiliate the person completely. And it also says specifically that in the Greek, the text says that EVERY one of the leaders spit in his face! There were up to 100 religious leaders in that room, and every single one of them walked up to him and spit on his face. How is this deserved? How is this right?
After this, each one of them began to beat Him with their fists. The devotional says, "Not only was this brutal -- It was sadistic! Humiliating Jesus with their spit and curses didn't satisfy the hatred of these men; they wouldn't be satisfied until they knew He had been physically maltreated." How insane is this? The religious leaders of Jerusalem are taking a man guilty of no wrong and are giving Him the ultimate humiliation, and violently beating Him!
After the religious leaders were done, it was the Roman guards' turn. They came up and also began mocking Jesus. Then, they blindfolded him, began taking turns delivering violent blows to Jesus' head and saying "Prophesy to us! Who is it that hit you?" (Matthew 26:68). The word used in the Greek for how they treated him was the word "dero", which refers to the grueling and barbaric practice of beating a slave.
Even after this, Jesus still didn't get a break! Now, the scribes and elders came up and gave Jesus his third straight beating. Then, they began slandering Him and cursing Him, including using profanity! Can you imagine? In this one night, Jesus is being spit on and beaten by HUNDREDS of people. People are screaming at Him and cursing Him. Even before the cross, Jesus had endured so much!
And imagine what it must have been like ON the cross! Jesus took the weight of every single sin of his followers in the entire history of the world. I mean, seriously, we sin multiple times a day. Who can say how many times exactly! But the average person lives 28,000 days. Jesus paid the price for every sin of every day of your life, along with the other billions and billions of followers Jesus has had! Not only did Jesus have a crown of thorns and nails driven into his hands and feet, he had the wrath of God for the countless sins of BILLIONS of people! The suffering that he must have gone through is unbelievable. Reading about this has made me sick, and to truly marvel about how much Jesus went through just to save and forgive me! And he did that for you as well! If you choose to follow Him, he has paid the price for every sin you have made and will ever make.
When you feel unloved, remember this: Jesus really does love you! He suffered not only great suffering at the hands of man, but he suffered the wrath of God against all the sins in the history of mankind, to save YOU! Ask God to help you to never forget the great sacrifices he has made for you!