Music Monday: “How Deep The Father’s Love For Us” by Stuart Townend.
by: Debbie Waltz
Happy Easter Week, Dearest Readers
I hope everyone had time to see my interview with Thomas Powell; However, it’s pretty short; our conversation explains the value of music and its unique ability to push past the barriers we humans put up and minister to our spirit. These songs help us find words that adequately express our emotions or appreciation for a God that sees beyond our current circumstances into a future only God can see. For many, music and The Word can be a powerful tools- leading to a genuine transformation.
Having said that, I found it somewhat challenging to come up with something positive to use for “Music Monday.” After all, what’s so optimistic about seeing our Lord crucified? Nothing. But this had to happen for Jesus to satisfy God’s wrath for our sins. Not only did it satisfy God’s wrath, but it was also necessary to fulfill the Old Testament’s prophecies. Zachariah 13:7 is one of the most well-known verses that tell of the Lord himself being forsaken; Jesus quotes the verse himself, saying: “God will strike the shepherd and his sheep will scatter.”
Elsewhere in the Bible, prophets use this same analogy of a shepherd but go into more detail, as it states in Isaiah: “Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.” (Chapter 53: 3-7, NIV)
This is precisely how the Bible gets twisted in today’s society; they don’t see how a loving God could let his children suffer during their time here on earth or deny them entry into heaven. We fail to recognize that Jesus is perfect and holy; therefore, the standard must be withheld. Since he recognizes our weakness (as made clear in Adam and Eve eating the forbidden fruit). God sent a substitute to die in our place. As I’ve said referenced many times before, Hebrews 4:15 reiterates that Jesus lived just like us. It says: “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin.”
That being said, Jesus must have experienced the same emotions we have. That includes anger. I can point out several instances where God is described as “jealous,” and his anger is openly written about-probably to ensure that other people don’t have to endure the same punishment or outcome. The flood is one of the most prominent examples. But today, I’m like to examine one of those passages on anger to see what we can glean from it. The passage is John 2: 13-17; the title heading is “Jesus Clears The Temple Courts.” Outsiders may look at this passage and think it supports their perspective of their fear of God. At first glance, we see a person toppling over chairs and bird cages while simply “strolling” through the marketplace. But let’s look at the circumstance a bit closer, shall we?
First, the temple and the marketplace were to be kept separate. They each had their days of operation, and the Sabbath was to be kept holy. No wonder Jesus was so upset. He didn’t want people showing disrespect for His Father’s house and stood up for what he believed. Each had its own time and place, and Jesus respected them. But when those boundaries were not respected or upheld, he had no problem putting them back in line. That is what is called “righteous anger.”
To view the video, it can be accessed here: