“For the Lord touched all parts of creation, and freed and undeceived them all from every deceit.”
― Athanasius of Alexandria
Undone, the bullying self, undone, the knot of evil, the tangled web of lies.
Undone, the ropes that bound us, our hobbled hopes, our truest selves.
“It is finished,” Jesus sighed.
From street level view, the crucifixion is a tragedy. A gifted teacher and prophet, calming storms and stirring the complacent, brilliant and kind, perceptive yet humble, the selfless, compassionate friend we search for in vain–brutally slain. Who would want to kill the only real love this world has known?
Skim through the first books of the New Testament, and watch the ratings drop. From high crowd approval–we are saved! we are freed! our long-awaited vindication is near!– to a murmuring mob, their anger stirred by insinuating whispers, their thumbs pointed down at Jesus .
“Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.”
From street level view, the cross is a puzzle–the brutal, tragic end of one more messiah, at the hands of the ever-fickle crowd.
From satellite view, the cross is the astonishing climax–the literal crux of the story.
- Imagine a puzzle, with the center piece now found.
- Imagine a blurry kaleidoscope of shape, color, dark and light suddenly come into focus.
- Imagine a confusing cacophony of pitches, snatches of melody drowned by blasts of dissonant sound, and the conductor walks on stage, raises his baton, and out of exquisite silence, it begins….
The cross is the Rosetta stone of the Bible, the mystery of God’s intentions for his broken creation, revealed.
After Jesus died, all the Old Testament pieces began to fall into place. Even as his abandoned disciples huddled in a room, listened for the march of Roman boots, they remembered. While they waited, trying to swallow fear, they thought of ancient promises and prophesy. We know the ending and the whisper they may have been shaking too hard to notice,
“Fear not, the story isn’t over. Death itself is about to be undone.”
Do you sit in sorrow today? Fear not! The cross made it certain, everything that saddens us will fully be undone.
In our series, An Alphabet Adagio, we are savoring the story of the Bible, our story, alphabetically. You can subscribe to e-mail at the bottom of this website so you don’t have to miss a letter.