Blessed… Beaten and Bloody

Well, things have settled back to a point following Hurricane Harvey that I feel it is time to get back to the blog. We have only a chapter and half remaining in this series. I am going to do my best to finish Matthew without any further interruptions.

27 The governor’s soldiers took Jesus into the governor’s house, and they gathered the whole company[b] of soldiers around him. 28 They stripped him and put a red military coat on him. 29 They twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head. They put a stick in his right hand. Then they bowed down in front of him and mocked him, saying, “Hey! King of the Jews!” 30 After they spit on him, they took the stick and struck his head again and again. 31 When they finished mocking him, they stripped him of the military coat and put his own clothes back on him. They led him away to crucify him (Matthew 27:27-31, Common English Bible).

I can honestly say, I have never really taken a beating in my life. When I was a kid I was in fights from time to time, most of which I got my tail beat and my nose bloodied but they really weren’t true beatings.

For me, as an adult, I don’t remember ever being in a fight. That isn’t to say I never came close, I have, more than once. As a result, I don’t know what it is like to truly be beaten, to have someone really beat on me.

I have also never really been a fan of fighting as a spectator sport. I will watch boxing and wrestling, along with some of the martial arts during the Olympics. I will watch movies about fighters. I have seen all the Rocky movies, however many there might be, I’ve lost track.

I have never really understood why people find entertainment value in watching two people beat each other to a pulp. I also have a great deal of trouble reconciling fighting (as a sport) with being a servant of the Prince of Peace. If you can, and I have a couple of friends who say they can, more power to you, it just doesn’t fit for me.

I guess it also goes hand in hand with our lesson today. I have a difficult time understanding how humans can treat one another the way the soldiers and the governor treated Jesus in today’s lesson. I know people have beat each other, with fists, with whips, with sticks and swords and knives and more probably for as long as people have inhabited the planet. Just because they have done it, does not mean I understand it.

When you add Jesus’ divinity to the story, it becomes even more difficult to understand. Then when I think, “Keith, that isn’t something just the Romans did. It isn’t something just the Jews did. It isn’t even something the Romans and the Jews did together. They played a part. Of that, there is no question. But what is equally true is, I had a hand it too. And, so did you.

But what is equally true, what I don’t want to believe is, I had a hand it too. And, so did you. Every human who has been walking the earth during the past 2000 years had a hand in beating Jesus, just like the Romans, just like the Jews, just like me, and just like you.

You and I beat down Jesus every time we beat down another person with our fists or with our words. We beat down Jesus whenever we see or know of a person who is being beaten down and we do nothing. We have already talked about these words of Jesus, “For as you have done it to one of the least of these, you have done it to me.”

The Good News is, as we shall slowly see over the next few days, Jesus stuck with the plan. He saw it through. Because he did, we have grace, we have forgiveness, we have life. Praise be to God.

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Joy and Thankfulness,

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

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