Jesus, at the point of the greatest most savage attack by his enemies, did not retaliate. He didn’t seek revenge, he didn’t say negative things about them to those beside him or to his father. Instead, because of his understanding of their issues, he chose instead to make a pathway for reconciliation. He understood the negative implications of any response other than one fueled by love.
So he chose to allow his crucifixion to continue. He chose the ultimate sacrifice to provide a way for them to have what he possessed – a home in heaven. He chose to SHOW us all the way to respond when he uttered “Father forgive them for they know not what they do.” Jesus knew they didn’t understand, he knew they thought they were in the right, he knew they were blind to their ignorance and he knew the one way to offer them the ability to see the truth – his sacrifice on Calvary.
Quite often some sort of sacrifice has to be made to bring about reconciliation. Sometimes the sacrifice that is made has consequences itself. When we are offended – we must consider whether our response will lead toward reconciliation, we must think deeply about it; it is not something we should do carelessly or automatically. We must really take the matter to heart to understand fully what we are doing. We have to try to predict what will happen as a result, so that it does not cause greater problems down the road. Reconciliation is not an easy matter and often hard to do. Yet, because Christ now resides in us – we know we can do the right thing because his Holy Spirit will show us the right path each time. The question is will we follow his lead and make Jesus visible by our response. Will you?
YIC – Pastor James L. Henley, Jr.