September 22, 2014
From the desk of Dr. A.J. Higgins
The Concerns of Christ
“Let not them that wait on Thee, O Lord God of Hosts,
be ashamed for My sake … be confounded … ” (Psalm 69:6)
What were the concerns of Christ while on Calvary’s Cross? What occupied His heart in those hours of indescribable and immeasurable suffering? Psalm 69 points to at least two matters which burdened Him:
The Faith of Others
The words of verse 6 indicate that the Lord Jesus was concerned that others might be stumbled by the treatment He was receiving. Why so? Here was a Man Who had trusted God completely and obeyed God explicitly. Here was One Who never sought His own will; the will of His Father was His meat.
Now, on the cross, His foes were taunting Him with the fact that He had trusted God and was now being forsaken. To them it was proof that His claims to trust God were spurious and He was now being righteously judged by God. All seemed to be the reverse of what the Lord Jesus had taught and claimed.
Would some of those who “wait on God,” and who “seek” God be confused and ashamed by the apparent contradiction? Would they assume that God could not be trusted to deal faithfully with those who trusted Him? His prayer was that no one would look upon His suffering and abandonment and think that God had failed Him in some way. He was thinking about others and their confidence in God.
The Glory of God
In John 12:27, 28, the Lord, facing the reality of Calvary expressed His ultimate desire, “Father, glorify Thy Name.” He chose the glory of God over the cross. Now, in the words of Psalm 69, a similar choice was made. When His foes were many and mighty (v 4), then He restored what He had not taken away.
Adam was a thief and took what was not his. In his rebellion and one act of disobedience, he brought sin and death into the world. He stole from God, not only the fruit, but the enjoyment God had in fellowship with His creatures. He called into question the holiness of God and the veracity of God by siding with the serpent. Adam did the “taking away,” the theft of what belonged to God.
The Lord Jesus restored what Adam lost. But He did far more. In the picture of the trespass offering, He not only restored what had been lost, but He added to it. What Christ brought in is far greater than what Adam took away. Adam took away innocency; Christ brought in holiness. Adam took away physical life; Christ brought in eternal life. Adam took away fellowship with God in the garden; Christ brought in fellowship with God both now and eternally. God, the One who was wronged, has moved to not only secure His own glory through His Son, but to bring rebellious man into an even more glorious relationship than Adam had.
Christ was the only selfless Man Who ever lived. He always thought of others – of His Father’s glory, and of our blessing. His own sufferings, humiliation, shame, and reproach, as great as they were, were not His chief concerns at Calvary.