Hannah has provided the notes today.
The passage today is Psalm 22:19-31. Thankfully yesterday’s passage isn’t the end of the story. Today’s prophetic passage looks beyond the cross…
This Psalm of anguish and brutality has transformed by verse 22 into a Psalm of praise and celebration, why? Because we serve a risen Saviour! Death had no hold on him. With his resurrection comes a desire to praise God. The root of praise is that Jesus saved us, if our redemption doesn’t cause a stir in our hearts then nothing will.
We see in verse 24 that he does not despise or abhor the suffering with which he was afflicted. That’s hard to take in because it was so brutal. Mike Pilavachi uses an illustration about expectant parents. He says that when children are born they’re disgusting, they can’t do anything for themselves and they fill their nappies and throw up everywhere. He talks about children growing up and becoming defiant and rude, embarrassing their parents and causing them endless frustration, he talks about them becoming teenagers and how they become angry at their parents, say they hate them, don’t appreciate the things they’re given. Once he’s explained all of that he asks why anyone would ever want children and explains that even though expectant parents don’t even know their child yet they love them enough for the journey. The love of a parent is stronger than the pain they’ll undoubtedly experience. God doesn’t hate the cross because he loves what it achieved, our eternity!
We, the ‘future generations’ mentioned in the passage have been told this amazing story and still respond in awe! God’s grace doesn’t lose impact. It’s as relevant today as it ever was. I remember when I became a Christian I had gone to the back of a youth service in Spring Harvest to pray with someone and make a commitment. I was fourteen and had always gone to church so I thought I knew what to expect. When I went back to where I had sat for the sermon the worship had started, they were singing “Light of the World” and for the first time ever I took in the meaning of the song, I was crying and so was my team leader – she’d been talking to me about the gospel throughout the week (she was probably relieved I’d finally given in!!). I remember we were singing “Here I am to worship, here I am to bow down, here I am to say that your my God.” and I was trying to sing them but I could barely breathe. I realised that the song in that moment was the song of my heart, I didn’t write it but all I wanted to say was “here I am – you are my God”.
This event requires a response, a thank you. Wherever you are and whatever is happening with you now – let’s remember the cross, the empty grave and our safe eternity and thank God.
Here I am to worship,
Here I am to bow down,
Here I am to say that You’re my God
You’re altogether lovely
Altogether wonderful to me (Tim Hughes)