Monday, June 12, 2023

Orange Moon Monday, June 12, 2023 "How Dark Was the Night"

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…

"How Dark Was the Night"   

      Abigail Adams, wife of the second president of the United States, John Adams, once wrote of the sacrifices made by those who suffered greatly to establish the nation during the War of Independence fought against Great Britain (1775-1783).

   "Posterity, who will reap the blessings, will scarcely be able to conceive the hardships and sufferings of their ancestors."

    The born again believer in the Lord Jesus Christ well knows the somber truth and reality of such things, as expressed by the hymn writer:

    "But none of the ransomed ever knew how deep were the waters crossed, nor how dark was the night the Lord passed through, 'ere He found His sheep that was lost" (The Ninety and Nine, Elizabeth Clephane).

    In a history marked by human suffering of every mode and measure, the Lord Jesus experienced the deepest waters and the darkest night.  He did so against a backdrop of "from everlasting" perfection of joy, peace, light, and life experienced as the divine Son of God.  Of no one else can this be said.  Our Savior entered the present world of suffering to become human for our sakes, and to feel what humanity feels of its pains, heartaches, and heartbreaks.  "A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief" foretold the prophet Isaiah of the Christ who would be "marred more than any man," a description speaking far more to agony of spirit and soul than of the body (Isaiah 53:3; 52:14; Luke 22:44). 

   The Lord's posterity will never know how grievously He suffered during His earthly lifetime as the man of sorrows, and particularly, upon the cross of Calvary.  We could never begin to comprehend the extremity of the dark horror, despite the fact that we well know suffering as members of a race "born unto trouble, as the sparks fly upward" (Job 5:7).  We do know this.  The greatest of our Savior's pains surely resulted not from jeers, fists, whips, and nails, but rather from the forsakenness He knew when the Father poured out His wrath against the Son "made to be sin for us" (II Corinthians 5:21).  "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?" cried the Lord Jesus into the deepest darkness ever known by a conscious being (Matthew 27:46).  No answer came in the hour that must have seemed an eternity to our blessed Lord.  To be stripped bare of His Father's and the Holy Spirit's presence led the Lord Jesus to a place of woe where no one has been before or since.  Again, He suffered, having before known eternal perfection, something no other heart has ever experienced.  Thus, His loss was the greatest of all griefs so that His posterity's gain might be "exceeding, abundantly above all we ask or think" (Ephesians 3:20).

    "He showed them His hands and His feet" (Luke 24:40).  He could not show the disciples the wounds of His spirit and soul.  He could not explain how deep were the waters, and how dark was the night through which He passed.  Nor can He tell us.  Even so glorious a teacher as the Holy Spirit, and so bright a light as the Scriptures, cannot explain how "acquainted with grief" the Lord Jesus became in order to acquaint us with God.  Of this holy Ancestor, we can only fall before Him as His posterity of praise, thanksgiving, and loving devotion to acknowledge…

So much given, so great the cost,
so terrible the sorrow, so vast the loss.
When on that day at Calvary, 
the Father smote His Son,
when for us He forsook Him
to bleed and die alone…
So much given, so great the cost.

So much given, so much forgiven.
So great the mercy shining in His face
when on that day we first believed,
and in this day as we receive
the grace to live in faithfulness,
the beauty of His holiness…
So much given, so great the cost. 

So much given, of glorious supply,
 grace that cost Him all, His holy, precious life.
For on that day when we believed,
His Spirit entered in.
And in this day when we believe,
He lives in us, we live through Him…
So much given, so great the cost.

"He shall see of the travail of His soul, and shall be satisfied: by His knowledge shall My righteous servant justify many; for He shall bear their iniquities."
(Isaiah 53:11)

Weekly Memory Verse

   All we like sheep have gone astray.  We have turned every one to His own way, and the Lord hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

(Isaiah 53:6)






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