I’m chewing on the fact that they did not understand. That the disciples didn’t get it. That to the followers of Jesus it made no sense. It just didn’t add up. And, as I mull over it, it shouldn’t have made sense. Who would have thought? Unimaginable. It simply does not compute!
They went on from there and passed through Galilee. And [Jesus] did not want anyone to know, for He was teaching His disciples, saying to them, “The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill Him. And when He is killed, after three days He will rise.” But they did not understand the saying, and were afraid to ask Him.
(Mark 9:30-32 ESV)
Think about it. Terms like “Son of Man” and “they will kill Him” shouldn’t go together. You’d think they should be mutually exclusive. I think of “Son of Man” and I think of Daniel’s vision (which our men’s group recently studied).
“I saw in the night visions, and behold, with the clouds of heaven there came one like a Son of Man, and He came to the Ancient of Days and was presented before Him. And to Him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve Him; His dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and His kingdom one that shall not be destroyed.”
(Daniel 7:13-14 ESV)
That’s what you would expect of the Son of Man. Coming with clouds, not betrayed into the hands of men. Commissioned by His Father, the Ancient of Days, not condemned by Him as He poured out on the Son the wrath deserved by others.
That the Son of Man should have been given dominion and glory, not bound and abused. That all peoples, nations, and languages should serve Him, not be spitting on Him as they mock Him. That the Son of Man would be reigning over an everlasting dominion, not hanging in defeat on a Roman cross.
The last thing you’d expect from Someone destined to reign over a kingdom that shall never be destroyed is that they would die.
I wonder if Daniel’s prophetic words hadn’t also come to mind for Jesus’ band of twelve as they scratched their heads trying to process His words. So confused by “they will kill Him” that they didn’t even hear, “He will rise.”
They didn’t understand. Ya’ think?!?
Nor should we, in a sense, understand this day we call Good Friday. What makes it good? It doesn’t make sense.
Unless you consider afresh our desperate need and the depths of God’s love. Unless you confess again that the wages of sin is death, and remember that the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord–the Son of Man. Unless you marvel anew that the Son of Man came in flesh to be the Lamb of God, the once for ever offering for sin, the ultimate Passover, the final shedding of blood for our redemption and deliverance from bondage to sin and death.
Maybe even with that it still doesn’t make sense. But it does make something so good out of this Friday.
That the Son of Man would die in time and space so that we might live eternally. That He would suffer so that we might be saved. That He would offer His life so that we might know new life and present our bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is our spiritual worship (Rom. 12:1).
O’ what a Savior!
What amazing grace!
To Him be glory this day and forevermore!