If your best friend was raped and beaten to death, no matter what good came out of it, would you ever want to see a video of it ever again?
I wrote that down after church the other day. I was there with my 7 and 5 year old sons, that are old enough to be pretty aware of things, and there was a video of Jesus’ beating and crucifixion on the screens. I know that for many it was a time of meditation, and considering, but I couldn’t watch it, and I really didn’t want my boys to either.
After church my wife and I were talking about it. She said that she was glad that some people were there got to see that, because they might not know what all happened, and they wouldn’t take the time to read it. I can see validity in that. I know that I had my share of Good Friday services where people described in great detail all of the things Jesus went through. I saw the passion and wept and wept and wept and still haven’t been the same since. I know that I grew a lot from experiencing those things.
But now, I’m at a point where I just can’t watch that stuff. I can’t watch it because it seems a little too much like we’ve given in to the gory entertainment industry where we like to see what we don’t really like to see. It seems a little too much like the law of diminishing returns has happened to us on the horror of what happened to Jesus. We heard about it, and that was horrible, but it wore off. We saw abstract pictures of it, and it was horrible, and we felt horrible, but then it wore off. The next thing we need to see has to be more horrible or it won’t have the same effect and so on and so forth until I’m covering my children’s eyes at church and closing my own eyes. I’m listening to the music to make it’s abrupt change from somber and dramatic to happy and loud. (If I did look at the screens, I wouldn’t be able to make a transition so fast anyway.)
The other reason why I can’t watch is because I know that Jesus went through all of that because I deserved it, but now that He did it for me I won’t have to…the flip side of that is that the people that don’t recognize Him and put their faith onto Him will get what they deserve themselves instead of trading with Him. When I see that, I see what is going to happen to my friends that reject Him. I’m not sure which one is more disturbing or heartbreaking-looking back at what happened to my best friend, or looking ahead at what is going to happen to friends I have now that refuse to put their hand on the lamb to transfer their sin. (God’s been talking about it since before Leviticus 4.24)
Do you see why I can’t watch these videos?
Let’s focus on that guy. I know Him and He’s really great. A long time ago, simply eating some bread told everyone that He died and rose again ( 1 Cor. 11:26.) He’s awesome and great and doesn’t need a lot of drama to reveal Himself.
I’d like to go back to those days. I shouldn’t have to show you a bunch of blood and raw flesh on a whip to try to prove that Jesus suffered, died, was buried, and rose again, just have dinner with me and you’ll see.