June 1, 2022
The Year of our Lord, Jesus Christ
Verily, verily, I say unto you, That ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy.
In context the Lord is speaking about His death. This is Verily, verily lesson number twenty-three. This lesson could be considered to be two in one.
One lesson is that …the world shall rejoice… over the death of the Savior. Think about that for a while. Why would anyone rejoice over the death of another? It’s one thing if a person lives a full age and passes away at an old age, this can be understood, but to be struck down in the prime of life, that is another thing altogether. Jesus was a vibrant, productive, and unbelievable miracle worker. Yet, the world rejoiced over His death. This is diabolical to say the least, that a person would rejoice over the premature death, or even wish that someone would die. Who among us has the right to wish or rejoice over the death of another? Are we better than they? Do they deserve death more than we? Yes, sometimes to protect the innocent corporal punishment must be ordered. But what had Jesus done that was damaging to others? He healed them, loved them, brought some back from the dead, prayed for them, and led them to the saving knowledge of the Gospel. Yes, it was God’s will for Jesus to die for the sins of the world, but to rejoice in His death is incomprehensible.
Lesson number two is that … ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy… His followers were sorrowful, but then they rejoiced just as Jesus prophesied. And ye now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you. John 16:22 While Jesus was in the grave, His believers were filled with sorrow. After His resurrection they must have been filled with joy; that joy remains unto today. His true followers rejoice in His resurrection knowing that it is a real-life picture of our own resurrection in the future. After all, as the old hymn claims: “This world is not my home I’m just a passing through, My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue!”
Two in one, what a bargain!
Until next time,
William T. Howe, Ph.D.