One of the soldiers, however, pierced his side with a spear, and immediately blood and water flowed out. This report is from an eyewitness giving an accurate account. He speaks the truth so that you also may continue to believe. These things happened in fulfillment of the Scriptures that say, “Not one of his bones will be broken,” and “They will look on the one they pierced.” (John 19:34-37)
Relate: Our church building was one of those old Methodist buildings. I know you have seen the type. It was red brick instead of white on the outside but when you walk inside the sanctuary, it could have been one of thousands scattered throughout the US. To the right and to the left when you walk in there are about 20 rows of uncomfortable wooden benches pointed towards the far wall where the big wooden pulpit stood. behind that pulpit was a large unadorned cross on a white wall. On each of the side walls there were about ten glass windows that began about waist high and arched a good twenty feet high. The ceiling started about twenty feet up but peaked at over thirty in the center.
As quaint and lovely as this sanctuary might look, it was horrible when it comes to climate control. The light from those huge windows that you could crack at the bottom but not truly open made it an oven in the summer. The lack of insulation made the building an icebox in the winter. Everyone made sure to bring along the appropriate seasonal accoutrements: portable fan, blanket, etc. It was one of those frozen Sunday nights and I was at the altar. Dad was a the guitar and someone else at the piano while those still at their seats sang away a slow love song to our Savior. My knees were turning blue on that cold wooden floor but I didn’t notice. I was lost in the moment. I was repenting of my ten year old sins with unashamed tears. As I did, I could picture this moment where Christ was pierced because of my sin. I would not go so far as to say it was a vision, but I most certainly did step into the prophecy John mentions when He says, “They will look on the one they pierced.” In context, this is what Zechariah prophesies:
Then I will pour out a spirit of grace and prayer on the family of David and on the people of Jerusalem. They will look on me whom they have pierced and mourn for him as for an only son. They will grieve bitterly for him as for a firstborn son who has died.
React: There is something beautiful about a soul rending moment when the realization weight of our sin comes into direct contact with the depth of His love. That moment in my life was not the last time this reality hit me, and I don’t believe it was the first either. I ask God now to bring again a spirit of grace and prayer so that I can see again the immensity of what He did for me on that fateful day. I need to be reminded of it often to keep me humble. I need to be reminded of it often as a reminder of why I pursue holiness. I need to look often on the one who we have pierced because there is no greater expression of love in the history of humanity. As hard as it is to watch, it is something I have just got to see.
I am so thankful for what You have done. I am so undeserving. I am so unworthy of such a beautiful, horrible expression of Your love. Thank You. Those words are all I have because no words would ever be able to express my gratitude for Your sacrifice. I love You, Lord. Thank You.