Pierced for Our Transgressions

Colossians 1:16 says all things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, were created by Christ. That includes the human body.

Can you imagine God designing the human body? Clearly, He did a wonderful job. Our bodies are both strong and agile, capable of innumerable tasks. We walk, run, jump, climb, swim, eat, drink, speak, sing, think, laugh, write, sleep, catch, clap, type, read, and so on.

Can you imagine the Son designing the human body, thinking about when He would take on the form of a man (Philippians 2:8) and wear the human flesh He had designed? Do you think He thought about the cross?

Can you imagine the Father and Son carefully placing in our bodies every nerve, every bone, every tendon, every muscle, every ligament, every artery, every bit of cartilage, realizing that Christ’s own flesh would one day be cruelly pierced with big, sharp, rusty nails?

In her book When God Weeps, Joni Eareckson Tada powerfully describes the Crucifixion and the thoughts that may have been running through Christ’s head on that fateful day:

“On your back with you!” One [soldier] raises a mallet to sink in the spike. But the soldier’s heart must continue pumping as he readies the prisoner’s wrist. Someone must sustain the soldier’s life minute by minute, for no man has this power on his own. Who supplies breath to his lungs? Who gives energy to his cells? Who holds his molecules together? Only by the Son do “all things hold together” (Colossians 1:17). The victim wills that the soldier’s live on—he grants the warrior’s continued existence. The man swings.

As the man swings, the Son recalls how he and the Father first designed the medial nerve of the human forearm—the sensations it would be capable of. The design proves flawless—the nerve performs exquisitely.

And all along, God knew. The Son knew.

Surely Christ, when He created the human body, could have cut Himself some slack by making our bodies less sensitive, by cutting back on the number of nerves packed into our flesh.

But He didn’t.

Surely He could have instantly called ten thousand angels to vanquish His executioners and escape the dreadful clutches of sin and the cross. 

But He didn’t.

Christ followed through with the plan. God, in the flesh, suffered unspeakable agony—excruciating pain—for us.

For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die—but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. | Romans 5:7-8

Think about your body.

Think about its exquisite design.

Think about God’s love for you.

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