This Lent, a group from our congregation has been studying Ben Myers’ book The Apostles’ Creed: A Guide to the Ancient Catechism. In one of this week’s chapters, we faced the fact that the Creed summarizes Jesus’ life and ministry with one word: “suffered.” Reading through the four Gospels will tell us, of course, that Jesus did much more than this. He taught, he healed, he fed multitudes, he confronted hypocrisy, and he set people free from the powers of spiritual evil. And yet this gets summarized in the Creed with the word “suffered” because his ultimate victory could only come through suffering. By suffering, Jesus entered fully into, experienced, and identified with the mess of the human condition. By suffering, he bore the consequences of our sin and brokenness. And by suffering, he turned the powers of sin and death on their heads and opened instead the door to resurrection life. This is why Paul could write in Romans 8:18, “I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory about to be revealed to us.” Our world is steeped in suffering but the good news of the Gospel is that Son of God has come and experienced the utter depths of this suffering in order to redeem us from it and enable us to share in his glory. Thanks be to God.
Grace and Peace,