The Relationship Building Christ :: Woman, behold thy Son! … Behold thy mother!

Each of the seven sayings from the Cross gives us a glimpse into the nature of Jesus Christ. In the third saying, Jesus, looks at his earthly mother, Mary, standing at the foot of the Cross, and the other disciple whom he loved and tells them to look at one another, before telling Mary that the disciple is her son and telling the disciple that Mary is his mother. In doing so, we see Jesus Christ – the Relationship Builder.

While the nails had pierced Jesus’ hands and feet, as Jesus was crucified, the prophecy of Simeon to Mary that a sword would pierce her heart was being fulfilled (Luke 2:35).

And amidst this anguish, Jesus’ focus was on relationships – family relationships. Though he was the heavenly Son of God, the only begotten Son of God (John 3:16), he fulfilled his earthly duties as a son who honors his mother and makes provision for her care, for his time had come to leave the world that he came to and return to God his Father (John 16:28). He chose his most loved disciple and delegates a relationship responsibility. The time had come for new relationships to be established and ratified.

Points to ponder:
What is interesting to note is that, this Saying “Woman, behold thy son!” and to the disciple “Behold thy mother!” could have been said anytime other than when Jesus was hanging on the Cross. He could have made this relationship arrangement during one of the times that his disciples met him when he was with his mother or at the wedding at Cana where he performed his first miracle of turning water to wine. Yet Jesus waited for the Cross – for his time to come. This teaches us that it is only by the Cross of Christ that new relationships are forged and formed.

Because Jesus, the son of God was lifted up on the Cross, he lifts many of us as sons (and daughters) into glory (John 3:14-15; John 12:32-33; Hebrews 2:10). The cross makes it possible for a new relationship (a new creation) because Jesus, the relationship building Christ and creator of the world took our place on it (Hebrews 2:9).

When you believes in Jesus, his death and his resurrection, you are made a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17) and a new relationship with God as God’s children commences. Are your a child of God? Are you related to God?

And if we are related to God, let us not forget to do our earthly duties as Jesus did. The world is hurting with broken relationships. There is unrest within families, hatred amongst kin, violence, wars between countries, wickedness, and evil and the world is in a state of anguish so much so that creation itself is groaning (Romans 8:22). It is in this world that God wants us to be relationship builders like he was. We need to take up our Cross, follow Jesus and tell others to look at him (to behold him) and be reconciled with God first and to love other as themselves. Are we relationship builders as Jesus – the relationship builder is?

John 19:26-27 (KJV)
26 When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!
27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.

Luke 2:34-35 (KJV)
34 And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against;
35 (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.

John 3:14-16 (KJV)
14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

John 12:32-33 (KJV)
32 And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.
33 This he said, signifying what death he should die.

Hebrews 2:9-10 (KJV)
But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
10 For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.

2 Corinthians 5:17 (KJV)
17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

All flesh must die

The sixth chapter of Genesis states that God looked upon the earth and saw that it was corrupt and all flesh was corrupt before him. So God told Noah, it was time for God to put an end to all flesh (every living human, every land animal, and even the birds of the air). Now one may wonder, why did God have to put an end to the other land creatures and the birds of the air? Man’s willful sin and disobedience against God had consequences. Man was made with the Spirit of God to reign within him for he was made a living soul (Genesis 2:7), but with the lust of his flesh, the lust of his eyes and the pride of life (1 John 2:16), he sinned and had inherited death, becoming corrupt. Man’s corruption was not limited to just mankind and his willful disobedience (sin) brought about a curse. Not only was the ground curse on account of man, but the Bible tells us that against their will, all of creation was subject to God’s curse; to corruption, i.e., to die and decay (Romans 8:20). So in a sense, the do-over of all of God’s land creation was in essence, God’s act of mercy to free the groaning creation from death and decay (Romans 8:22). All flesh must die, so that the corruptible could be made back in the way, God had intended it to be, incorruptible.

Points to ponder:
There is a conflict between our flesh and the Spirit of God that reigns within us (Galatians 5:17). They are at war and the lust of our flesh leads to corruption and condemnation for the wages of sin is death (Romans 8:1). We need to live by the Spirit and not by the flesh but in order to live by the Spirit of God, as holy and righteous creatures, we need to mortify (put to death) the sinful things of the world that lurk within us (Colossians 3:5). If we live by the flesh, we shall die, but if we live by the Spirit, then we must through the Spirit of God, mortify the deeds of the body so that we shall live (Romans 8:13). In other words, all (of our) flesh must die (for the Spirit of God to reign in our life)! Are you dead or alive?

Genesis 6:11-13 (KJV)
11 The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence.
12 And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth.
13 And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.

Romans 8:19-22 (NLT)
19. For all creation is waiting eagerly for that future day when God will reveal who his children really are.
20. Against its will, all creation was subjected to God’s curse. But with eager hope,
21 the creation looks forward to the day when it will join God’s children in glorious freedom from death and decay.
22. For we know that all creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time.

Romans 8:13 (KJV)
13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.