When a loved one dies, immediately impressed upon the survivors are many things.
- awakened is the sense that life can be interrupted abruptly .
- the awakening of a higher truth is divulged.
- awakened to resentment at the crassness of people’s handling of your loved one’s passing.
More than just superficially acknowledged, these new awakenings are circulated in the collection of soul depth.
In every man exists a repository for the efficient operation of simple believing.
Impulse, impression, and projection are ideas associated with this place.
Things are conceived here and thoughts take on form from what is in there. This area of the brain operates involuntarily and has no moral filters. It can be called “unconscious.”
Notion, perception, conception, modeling and theory work here. They fight to exist as one hypothesis may contradict another. What dominates in this belief emporium are those concepts that combine to form a system, a harmony, a balance, a thread of consistency.
When new suggestions appear, they “click” with the whole, or create dissonance automatically in there. If discord, it causes conflict in the mind, and hinders peace and rest. In contrast, fitting-in enables rest maintenance. Nevertheless, a harmonized belief system may still be set in disarray by corresponding yet deeper realities — new challenges.
Good Friday may be one of those events which defy this inner self. This possibility is because, first, we have on this day a violent death, with bloodshed, second, we see this death inflicted on an innocent man, and third, we are told that the inflictor of pain, God the Father, took pleasure in this bruising of His own Son. Next, the fierceness of the mob’s antagonism against The Son of God disgusts and shames us; and fifth, the unthinkableness of the Son’s forgiveness to his murderers baffles our unconscious.
These facts are not digestible to most because most’s harmonized pool of concepts is tempered in falsehood. It’s the make-believe of another synchronized system which has a kinder, less radical, premise. It’s an orb in which pleasure has a primacy; so does money and things; so does pain-free comfortable living. It’s a world of prosperity and material goods; it’s so well accepted and agreed upon by the tall-tale safe-world obligers. They work very hard to master a person’s emotion-based inner-universe. We all fall into the trap.
So how do we fit Good Friday into our scheme? We must let it change us and uncompromisingly; but, in what way? By becoming less of a nice-guy type, less of a pragmatist, less of a logician, and less of a worldly dreamer, I face the harsh facts and let them encroach upon my belief system. I then embrace these truths and armor myself with them enough to resist the laughers and mockers who scorn.
See, scorners take on the role of human-race-protectors; they wanna protect humankind from you and me. The mockers want to assume the benefit of Christ’s sacrifice for themselves, but without the disgusting, excruciating, cringe-evoking event. Notwithstanding, we dare to clinch our unlikely, hard to digest, unfathomable, and hideous truth. Yes, we build our whole system on a bloody cross, a violent death, a radical forgiveness, a substitutionary atonement. It doesn’t make a lot of sense to them or even to us, but we love it and cleave to it.
In Leviticus 14 two birds were chosen. One was killed and its blood poured in a basin with fresh water. The living bird was wrapped up with hyssop and fastened to a handle of cedar with a crimson cord. This bird was dipped in the blood of the dead bird and set free. The blood stained the free bird permanently and it flew away. We too carry that stain in our unconscious forever. It erases the stain of sin but it appears visible to all.
Friends, the savor of life unto life is accompanied by the savor of death in us. We are witnesses unto Him. It is more than an action, but a fact of our uniqueness. Others discern the aroma or smell, as each case differs. Yes, Christ and Him crucified roots our being.
In closing, “Christ and Him crucified:” our victory shout!! Without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins. Yes, that blood so precious, God’s own, conscience cleansing and salvation purchasing, poured forth from a body marred and beaten and whipped. It was all necessary, judgment on sin, judgment on the human race, wrath of God poured out. Jesus was killed in place of us.