And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?… Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. ~Matthew 27:46, 50
Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. ~Hebrews 13:5
Watching various events in my own life and in the lives of friends and family, the emotions and thoughts of loneliness, being forsaken, and many more seem to come in like a flood and overwhelm at times. As a result, my thoughts of late have tended to go back to Christ on the cross. Not that I desire to crucify Him over and over again but to learn something about being left, that I might keep it in perspective.
Thinking about the closest relationship we have (or have had) with someone and then multiplying that by infinity and making it absolutely perfect in all aspects, we might have an idea of the relationship between God the Father and God the Son. Think of the closeness they have with each other, the limitless interaction, the perfect understanding of each other, on and on we could go! Got an idea of it? Now break it apart! That is what happened to Christ on the cross, and Matthew recorded it in the verses noted above. The Son was forsaken by the Father. I cannot fathom the fullness of the impact of that event, but I can understand this – the Son was forsaken, so the sons would not.
Through the forsaking of the Son, the sin of the sons has been paid for, and the Father no longer needs to turn away. Similarly, the writer of Hebrews reminds us that many times in the Old Testament God reassured Moses and Joshua and the Chosen people that He would never leave or forsake them and brings that principle forward; we can do the same. It is a promise for those counted as sons of God; God will not leave us nor forsake us.
Interestingly, the first part of that verse in Hebrews 13 addresses daily living; do not covet and be content. Much is going on around us and in our lives influencing how we live. The emotions are there, but so is the comfort; comfort knowing that as sons of God, He will not leave or forsake us. His Son already bore that burden and now acts as our mediator before the throne.
So, as a comfort to those around us and maybe even ourselves, if we have accepted Christ as our personal Savior, we can trust that God is always there…keep in mind that is not just the presence of a human companion…that is the presence of the Almighty Creator and Sustainer who sees all and does all.
The emotions and experiences of this world are temporary…even their scares fade away after a while, but the comfort of resting in the arms of my Creator and laying my head on the chest of my Savior is forever.
In parting, my life verse: “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.”