December 17: Jesus is the Agonized Savior

Psalm 22:7-18

Everyone who sees me mocks me;
they sneer and shake their heads:
“He relies on the Lord;
let him save him;
let the Lord rescue him,
since he takes pleasure in him.”
It was you who brought me out of the womb,
making me secure at my mother’s breast.
I was given over to you at birth;
you have been my God from my mother’s womb.
Don’t be far from me, because distress is near
and there’s no one to help.
Many bulls surround me;
strong ones of Bashan encircle me.
They open their mouths against me —
lions, mauling and roaring.
I am poured out like water,
and all my bones are disjointed;
my heart is like wax,
melting within me.
My strength is dried up like baked clay;
my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth.
You put me into the dust of death.
For dogs have surrounded me;
a gang of evildoers has closed in on me;
they pierced my hands and my feet.
I can count all my bones;
people look and stare at me.
They divided my garments among themselves,
and they cast lots for my clothing.

There are few Old Testament passages that are as emotional for the believer as Psalm 22. If you don’t believe me, read it again. The passage is to be read as though it comes from the parched lips of your bleeding and dying Messiah. There is no way to read it without being impacted deeply. The agony and yearning of the Messiah is felt deeply here and the likeness to Jesus’ experience on the cross is obvious. From the ridicule of His oppressors to the gambling over His clothes, Jesus fully experienced the agony of this psalm.

I don’t want to draw out each of the comparisons for you. I want you to see the Gospel of the cross in this text for yourself. Please take it up again, in your own Bible if you want, and see the love and sacrifice of Jesus for you. This is what Christmas is about.

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