Our ability to share the extraordinary love of Christ with others hinges on how much we have actually accepted it for ourselves. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 1 John 4:11 (NIV) We can’t give what we don’t have, no matter how much we would like to! Genuine gifting of the extraordinary authentic love of Christ is given through receiving, dear one.
Mark 5:1-20 reminds me of His extraordinary love for… the one. In this passage Jesus purposefully crosses a raging storm to reach a land most Jews probably never listed on their desired places of destination. In this passage Jesus encounters a man, an outcast and yet this man, this outcast was Jesus’ very reason for coming! This man was living among the tombs, naked, possessed by evil and bloodied from all the cutting he was inflicting upon himself. This man was wild and violent, no human could get through to him anymore and yet Jesus came through a storm without, to calm the storm within this man. One encounter with Christ Himself and this man is completely restored, made new, he walks free of the tombs!! Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NIV)
Jesus purposefully crossed all boundaries of time and space as we know it to enter into the raging brokenness of our world to seek and save the lost (Luke 19:10). This passage proves that He would have gone to the effort even if it had only been me; if it had only been you, do you believe that Truth?!! I pray you do, dear one.
Jesus became the outcast, tortured, stripped, bloodied even crucified and placed in a tomb. He took the place of this man in the passage, He took the place of me; of you. So that by His wounds we could be healed! Jesus’ tomb stands empty to this day so that by His life we can live in Hope that will never die (1 Peter 1:3)!! 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. Isaiah 53:5 (NIV)
This man in our Mark 5 passage becomes so rejuvenated by the life and love and Christ that he changes his city through the outflow of Christ’s love in him! Dear one, Jesus came for YOU that YOU might experience His unconditional and lavish love for YOU, His beloved. This encounter between the demon possessed man and Jesus is recorded three different times in the Bible! He doesn’t want you to miss the point that He came to save YOU! This side of the cross the victory is won! God fought for YOU and now His victory is YOURS for the accepting! Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. John 15:13 (NIV)
Jesus is the Savior of the whole world and yet is still a God willing to enter the storm to still His child with His overcoming love.
“Because I love YOU.” -Jesus (Isaiah 43:4)