Broken for you and me


As I pondered over the word ‘broken’, I wondered as to what are some of the things that were broken in order to crucify, or in the crucifixion of Jesus. Some that surfaced are given below,

  1. The Law was broken
    The 9th commandment (law) which said that you shall not bear any false witness (Exodus 20:16) was broken, for when those who tried Jesus found no fault in Him (Luke 23:4, Mark 14:55), many bore false witnesses with contradictory accounts against Jesus (Mark 14:56-59).
  2. Jesus’ body was broken
    In describing His manner of death (by crucifixion), Jesus informed His disciples, in the event that we familiarly know as the Lord’s supper, that His body will be broken, by symbolically breaking the bread and presenting it to His disciples with the following words “Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me” (1 Corinthians 11:24). Though this may seem contradictory to the verse that states that none of His bones were broken (John 19:36), we must recognize that the breaking of one’s body need not necessarily mean that one’s bones need to be broken as well. There is absolutely no doubt however that his body was scourged, beaten, pierced and marred (literally broken) in the events preceding his crucifixion.
  3. Jesus’ heavenly relationship with God the Father was broken
    When Jesus the sinless became sin (2 Corinthians 5:21), a Holy God (the Father) who could have nothing to do with sin, had to severe the Unitarian relationship that He had with with His Son, Jesus, which leads to Jesus crying in agony, “My God, My God, why have YOU forsaken me?” (Mark 15:34).
  4. Jesus’ earthly relationship with his mother was broken
    From the Cross, Jesus refers to Mary, his earthly mother, not as mother but as woman, when he hands over responsibility to his beloved disciple John to care for Mary (John 19:26-27). When the penalty for sin was paid by Jesus, the Lamb of God (Agnus Dei), Mary’s boy child demonstrated and vocally expressed that He was indeed the foretold seed of the woman (Genesis 3:15), the Son of God (Isaiah 9:6).

What are some of the other things that you can think off that were broken in the redeeming and saving act of Jesus, in the events that led to and in the crucifixion of Jesus Christ?

Earthly laws against God, heavenly and earthy relationship of Jesus, including His body was broken. Why? Jesus was broken, so that the broken relationship of God with man could be restored.
He would rather be broken for you and me, than be broken without you and me.

Be Broken or Be Crushed by Jesus


Luke 20: 17-18, records some profound and contrasting words by Jesus in which He proclaims that the stone (referring to Himself, the ROCK) which the builders (people) have rejected is become the cornerstone (foundation of God) and whosoever falls upon the stone (Jesus) shall be broken; but on whomsoever the stone (Jesus) shall fall, the stone will grind him to powder (will be crushed).

While the exposition to this text may seem at first as a little difficult to understand, the hidden treasure in these words of Jesus is quite simple. It is as plain as Jesus expressed it.

Whoever falls on (commits their life to) Jesus shall be broken (of their self, the bondage of sin and the seduction of the world). They ironically will be the ones who will be saved.
On the contrary, on whomsoever Jesus (the ROCK) shall fall (as a means of God’s righteous judgment), they will be totally ground to powder (face the full wrath of God’s judgment for not having fallen on (believed in) Jesus).

What does it mean to Fall on Jesus?
It means it is to acknowledge the Lordship of the Sovereign God, and believe that Jesus is the son of God, the savior of the world and confess, so that we are broken from our self, the bondage of sin and the seduction of this world, and totally TRUST in Him. But then again, I think it still falls short of the eloquence and simplicity in which our beloved and wonderful son, Reuben put it – You be the judge of that.

What does it mean to fall on Jesus?
To fall on Jesus means “there is nothing to be worried about, because he will catch you” – Reuben Abishai Paul (Age 3)

Luke 20:17-28 (KJV)
17
And he beheld them, and said, What is this then that is written, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner?
18
Whosoever shall fall upon that stone shall be broken; but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.

Can Humpty Dumpty be put together again?


Humpty DumptyAs I pondered over what I should write on the aspect of ‘brokenness’ for Hidden Treasures today, I was reminded of the poem, Humpty Dumpty, that we are all probably at least aware of. And then, the poet in me was quickened and given below is what resulted, provided for your reading pleasure.

The premise of the poem is based on the scripture verse found in Psalm 51:17

Psalm 51:17 (KJV)
17
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.

Mano Paul sat on a wall
Mano Paul had a great fall
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Could not put Mano Paul together again

But then THE KING said, Come on here
I cannot bear to see your eyes tear
My potter hands mend and My Spirit will restore
Your shattered and broken life stronger than before

Now Mano Paul has leaped over the wall
And Mano Paul has no fear to fall
For each time he does, he looks up to see
That he is indeed in the King’s hand and his heart fills with peace

Now I reckon that you personalize this by re-reading this poem by replacing my name with yours.


Line by line explanation of the poem, for those interested –

Mano Paul sat on a wall
(Life on a wall with God on one side and the world on the other)
Mano Paul had a great fall
(Toward the side of the world, falling in sin and living under its bondage)
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
(All of the world’s efforts)
Could not put Mano Paul together again
(were futile in restoring the relationship back to God, putting you back on the other side of the wall)

But then THE KING said, Come on here
(Jesus, THE KING of Kings beckons, come follow me – Luke 18:22)
I cannot bear to see your eyes tear
(Jesus will wipe away all your tears – Revelation 7:17)
My potter hands mend and My Spirit will restore
(We are clay in the potter’s hand to be fashioned according to God’s plan – Jeremiah 18:6; The blind man sight was restored, and he saw clearly when Jesus put his hands on his eyes – Mark 8:25)
Your shattered and broken life stronger than before
(And he increased his people greatly; and made them stronger than their enemies – Psalm 105:24)

Now Mano Paul has leaped over the wall
(Moved from sin unto salvation, from the side of the world to the side of God, when you believe in the restoration by Jesus – Hebrews 9:28)
And Mano Paul has no fear to fall
(The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord and though he falls, he shall not be utterly cast down – Psalm 37:23-24)
For each time he does, he looks up to see
(I will life up mine eyes … my help comes from the Lord – Psalm 121:1-2)
That he is indeed in the King’s hand and his heart fills with peace
(For the Lord upholdeth the good man in his hands – Psalm 37:24; Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.- Isaiah 26:3)

Mano Paul sat on a wall
Life on a wall with God on one side and the world on the other
Mano Paul had a great fall
Toward the side of the world, falling in sin and living under its bondage
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Could not put Mano Paul together again
The world efforts (king’s horses and men) were futile in restoring the relationship back to God
But then THE KING said, Come on here
Jesus (THE KING) beckons, come follow me (Luke 18:22)
I cannot bear to see your eyes tear
Jesus will wipe away your tears (Revelation 7:17)
My potter hands mend and My Spirit will restore
We are clay in the potter’s hand to be fashioned according to his plan (Jeremiah 18:6); After that Jesus put his hands again upon the blind man eyes, and made him look up: and he was restored, and saw every man clearly (Mark 8:25)
Your shattered and broken life stronger than before
And he increased his people greatly; and made them stronger than their enemies (Psalm 105:24)
Now Mano Paul has leaped over the wall
Moved from sin unto salvation, from the side of the world to the side of God, when you believe in the restoration by Jesus (Hebrews 9:28)
And Mano Paul has no fear to fall
The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord and though he falls, he shall not be utterly cast down (Psalm 37:23-24)
For each time he does, he looks up to see
I will life up mine eyes … my help comes from the Lord (Psalm 121:1-2)
That he is indeed in the King’s hand and his heart fills with peace
For the Lord upholdeth the good man in his hands (Psalm 37:24); Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. (Isaiah 26:3)

Unbreakable


Coconut Coir - 3 strands inter-twinedThough this article’s title may make one wonder if its contents are about M. Night Shymalan’s mystery thriller with supernatural overtones that revolves around a man who learns something extraordinary about himself after a devastating accident, I can assure you, it is not.

This title is taken from the Holy and infallible word of God, wherein it is recorded in the book of Ecclesiastes, where the speaker before the assembly (ekklesia) states in chapter 4 verse 12, that a threefold cord is not easily broken. The imagery I have when I read this text is the rope that is made up of coir (coconut fibers) and in order for me to break that, I need to separate the strands from one another before attempting to break it. Failure to separate the strands before trying to break the cord is usually futile.

I remember sharing from this text in the wedding reception of my brother, Remo’s and also in the wedding reception of a family friend. The premise of the message from this text was this. With a divorce rate so high and ever increasing, homes are broken and lives are shattered. Why is something that God hates (and yes God hates divorce) so prevalent in our times today? The Bible has the answer and we can see the relevance to this in this text.
You and your spouse are two persons made one (in marriage) and the two of you should be inter-twined with God and made one. It is God who is the third person in your marriage, but he needs to be wrapped in with you two, so that your relationships with Him and with each other is solidified. We should not let God, the third person in your marriage be a third person in our lives as well. This is the grounds for separation and weaknesses in marriages. It is only befitting that I share the words of a song by Cliff Richard that I used to listen to when I was growing up –

You and me and Jesus; Jesus, me and you
On our own, we’d break; with Him we will make it through
Jesus, take us, make us what you want us both to be
I give myself to her; she gives herself to me.

However, note that this does not apply only to a marriage relationship but to any relationship. It may be a parent-child relationship, a business partnership, an employer-employee relationship, a teacher-student relationship, etc. In all of these, it is imperative to ensure that the one who wraps around the relationship and strengthens it must be God.

Isn’t it interesting that even in the very essence of God, we see this to be evident – One God, three persons as God the Father, Jesus the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

The question that remains then is “Are you/Am I unbreakable?

Ecclesiastes 4:12 (KJV)
12
And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.

For a related reading, see Habit #6 – Partner with God and his people

Broken piggy bank


Earthern_Piggy_BanksMy beloved wife, Sangeetha, in a conversation about inculcating the principles of saving in our much loved son, Reuben, expressed to me how in India, piggy banks are usually pots made of clay  and in order for someone to get the contents from within, the only way they could do so was by breaking the pot. Interestingly, ‘pygg’ in Middle English referred to the clay used to make jars and kitchen pots and in the 18th century, the term ‘pygg jar’ was the changed into ‘pig bank’.

As she shared, I was struck with a profound revelation hidden in the Scriptures. Like the piggy banks made of clay, we are made in the image of God from the dust of the earth and the Bible refers to our bodies as jars of clay (2 Corinthians 4:7). Just as within the piggy bank, is stored content of high value, so we store in our jars of clay, THE TREASURE of high value, which is the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 4:6). But what is really the most important for us to not lose track of, is that whatever is present within the piggy banks is of little value and cannot be used  as long as it remains within the piggy bank, however, when the piggy bank is broken, the valuable contents are now made available for use. Similarly, unless we break ourselves down, the treasure of Jesus Christ in us, just remains within us, but when we break ourselves, He is made available for the use (of salvation) to many. We need to be broken, humbling ourselves, becoming meek and decreasing in our self, so that He (Jesus) will increase.

The question then to reflect upon is Are you/Am I ready to be broken?

2 Corinthians 4:7 (KJV)
6
For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
7
But we have this treasure in earthen vessels (jars of clay), that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.