Morning, April 14, edited from Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening
“All who see me sneer at me; they separate with the lip [make faces], they wag the head.” — Psalm 22:7
Mockery was a significant ingredient in our Lord’s woe. Judas mocked him in the garden; the chief priests and scribes laughed him to scorn; Herod considered him to be nothing; the servants and the soldiers jeered at him, and brutally insulted him; Pilate and his guards ridiculed his royalty; and on the tree all sorts of horrid jests and hideous taunts were hurled at him. Ridicule is always hard to bear, but when we are in intense pain it is so heartless, so cruel, that it cuts us to the quick. Imagine the Savior crucified, racked with anguish far beyond all mortal estimate, and then picture that motley crowd, all wagging their heads or thrusting out the lip in bitterest contempt of one poor suffering victim! Certainly there must have been something more in the crucified One than they could perceive, or else such a great and mingled crowd would not unanimously have honored him with such contempt. Was it perhaps evil confessing, in the very moment of its greatest apparent triumph, that even after all, it could do no more than mock at that victorious goodness which was then reigning on the cross? O Jesus, “despised and rejected of men,” how could you die for men who treated you so harshly? In this is love amazing, love divine, yes, love beyond degree. We, too, have despised you in the days before our rebirth, and even since our new birth we have set the world on high in our hearts, and yet you bleed to heal our wounds, and die to give us life. O that we could set you on a glorious high throne in all men’s hearts! We would ring out your praises over land and sea till men should as universally adore as once they did unanimously reject.
“Thy creatures wrong thee, O thou sovereign Good!
Thou art not loved, because not understood:
This grieves me most, that vain pursuits beguile
Ungrateful men, regardless of thy smile.”