For us, many things happen by accident. We have flat tires that make us late for work. We have trees that lose branches and knock out windows. We forget our keys, have to call our family, and are late for an appointment. Yet, in the life of our Lord Jesus, the cross was no accident.
Now it came to pass, when the time had come for Him to be received up, that He steadfastly set His face to go to Jerusalem.
What does that mean to you that Jesus set His face toward Jerusalem? Luke uses the word steadfastly. Jesus meant to go to Jerusalem. He meant to both go to Jerusalem and face the cross. Neither were accidents. They weren’t a conflagration of circumstances that He just couldn’t avoid. Jesus went on purpose. He faced the cross for you and me on purpose.
It wasn’t something that He sought to escape or avoid. He didn’t just go because it was inevitable. He went on purpose.
During that last week before the crucifixion Jesus begins to express His feelings about what is coming. He says, “Now My soul has become troubled; and what shall I say, ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour.” (John 12:27) Notice that He feels exactly what we would feel, but that He has no desire to avoid it. He asks the disciples, “shall I say, ‘Father, save me from this hour?'” He then says, “for this purpose I came to this hour.” He comes to what we now call holy week on purpose. Think about how wondrous this love Jesus says He has for us is! The apostle Paul prayed that the Ephesian church would understand this love of Jesus:
14 For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, …17b that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.Ephesians 3:14-19 (emphasis: 17-19)
What does it mean to you that He would intentionally give Himself for you? Do you marvel at it? Does it blossom in your heart into praise? Does His love call you to live anew for Him and Him alone?
Something to think about,