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December 18th - Josh Donahue

My name is Joshua Donahue, certified BCM funny man. As with most of you, my days are spent toiling for a piece of paper that tells me how many numerals I get to make, based on numbers I get from solving questions already answered, surrounded by numbers of others doing the same. The numbing late nights, the droning courses, the intangibility yet persistence of our work can become our identity these four or more years. The muddied waters of academic slog seldom allow for a breath; our teenage minds burdened with adult consequences; our faith is yet a quiet light in the roaring darkness. Too often the world’s cold embrace on our soul chills our conscience and holy fire, and our relationship with Father takes a shout to hear over the howling.  How can we, troubled and tortured sinners of our own machination, lift our eyes to heaven amongst our own blindness? But Christ, knowing our internal plight, lowered himself to our gaze.


 From the NIV,

“Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,

and he will divide the spoils with the strong,

because he poured out his life unto death,

and was numbered with the transgressors.

For he bore the sin of many,

and made intercession for the transgressors.”

-Isaiah 53:12


In a time of Isaiah, the enemies of Judah and Israel sought their destruction. The main Jewish question became: from where would deliverance come? God’s answer would The kingdom of Israel aligned with Syria and fell (BC 722). Hezekiah of Judah sought Egyptian help against the Assyrians (BC 701), then attempted to deliver themselves by being extorted, before finally asking God, who provided swift and secure salvation. 


However, in Isaiah, we see the people ask for a temporary reprieve, while God reveals the eternal victory. Here we see God’s orchestration of the world spelled out in ultimate clarity. The multitude of sacrifices made could never change our soul’s desire. They were mere cloaks for ruining flesh. The centuries since the commandments had only proven that restoration was not in man’s ability. We could not bring ourselves to Him, so He brought Himself to us.


4 In return for my friendship they accuse me,

but I am a man of prayer.

-Psalm 109:4

Jesus’s last days were bathed in prayer. The sovereign Son must have used heavenly strength as he fought for each breathe on the cross, silently praying for comfort and relief from his peril, but most importantly, for everyone who would be saved through Him. Though He valued his friends, Jesus did not seek the glories of the crowd, for He knew they were fickle. Instead, He frequently communed with the Father, finding His rest, truth, and purpose in Him. Why do we, then, care for other’s praise, when Jesus had us in mind as He gave his life for us?


25 It was nine in the morning when they crucified him. 26 The written notice of the charge against him read: the king of the jews. 27 They crucified two rebels with him, one on his right and one on his left.

-Mark 15:25-27


In a since of perverted justice, the King was crucified amongst us, by us, and for us. The murderers who hung beside Jesus were no different than the murderers who had put Christ there, and we are no different than them. But Christ accepted his lowly position for us because it belonged to us. Through Christ assuming our previous identities, we can throw off our old identities like ragged clothes in exchange for a heavenly one. Jesus died for you. He gave everything to intercede for you. Take that truth every day with whole-hearted thanksgiving and blessing.


Questions:

  1. Why is it important in our walk to put our identity in Christ first?

  2. Should our identity in Christ be our only identity?

  3. In 1 Corinthians 9:19-23, Paul speaks of taking on identities to share the Gospel. Like Christ, what are some identities we can assume to win others for the Gospel?

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1 Comment


Joshua Donahue
Joshua Donahue
Dec 20, 2023

Wow great job. I will answer none of your questions.

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