Today’s Reading Luke 23
Happy Monday everyone, autumn is finally here. The trees are changing and the leaves are falling on the ground. The time change has taken place and the kids are waking up an hour earlier. The smells of cinnamon and cloves is permeating throughout the house. This time of year, reminds me of my grandmother and how she would start her baking expeditions and fill the house with smells of sweet potato pie and so many cakes that they are hard to count. Sometimes she would bake about twenty pies per day. That was an amazing woman and she influenced my life more than words can describe.
As we enter Luke 23, the passion of Christ is unfolding to us through the testament of the apostle Luke. Luke’s perceptive of Christ is seeing Christ in the human aspects in connection of his divinity. Christ is shown as God and fully human which allows Christ to truly understand the full spectrum of human emotions and life: happiness, sorrow, joy, pain, suffering and ultimately death. Luke has several instances in this chapter that personifies the humanity and emotion of Christ through the eyes of women. This is critical because during the day of Christ, women were not recognized as being integral but Luke enlightens us to how important women are in our lives.
Luke 23: 27-31
And there followed him a great multitude of the people and of women who were mourning and lamenting for him. 28 But turning to them Jesus said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. 29 For behold, the days are coming when they will say, ‘Blessed are the barren and the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed!’ 30 Then they will begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us,’ and to the hills, ‘Cover us.’ 31 For if they do these things when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?”
Luke 23: 48- 49
48 And all the crowds that had assembled for this spectacle, when they saw what had taken place, returned home beating their breasts. 49 And all his acquaintances and the women who had followed him from Galilee stood at a distance watching these things.
Luke 23: 54- 56
It was the day of Preparation, and the Sabbath was beginning.[g] 55 The women who had come with him from Galilee followed and saw the tomb and how his body was laid. 56 Then they returned and prepared spices and ointments.
Luke is attempting to connect the reader to the true human side of Jesus with the most natural and intense connections that we know: women. We all have women in our lives that brings out the best of us. We have mothers, wives, sisters, daughters, aunts, and friends that will be there to really listen to us in the most sorrowful times and give us unparalleled compassion. Both men and women can provide compassion, but it is something that is innate about a mother’s love that cannot be explained. Many times, throughout our lives, we may want to have our mothers by our side, even if we have not had a close relationship with her. Mom’s presence is just a true comfort. Luke uses this to his advantage. “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children.” This is the only place in the gospel that this passage is found. Luke is making a powerful statement about the true pain that is happening to Christ. This is something that is at the core of human emotions: pain and sorrow.
Luke also shows us that because of the persistence and devotion of the women, we can know what Christ suffered at the cross and where he was buried. In the two passages above, the women are the only ones that truly followed Christ from the trial to the grave. In my study bible, the author relays this very eloquently: “They stayed at the cross when most of the disciples had fled, and they got ready to anoint their Lord’s body. Because of their devotion, they were the first to know about the resurrection. As believers, we may feel we can’t do much for Jesus. But we are called to take advantage of the opportunities given us, doing what we can do and not worrying about what we cannot do.” This allows for so much clarity for me and the death and resurrection of Christ. Most of my life I have always wondered why the Marys could not recognized Christ after the resurrection. But now, I understand that they were the only ones able to endure and witness the true pain and suffering and scourging of Christ. When they went to the tomb, they were expecting to see the mangled body of the human, but they had the opportunity to see the glory of God.
Luke allows us to see a couple of things:
- Women are an essential part of our life and we need to cherish them in all aspect of our life. Make sure that you take time to let each one know that they are special to you and make sure to connect with them.
- The persistence and devotion of a few can impact phenomenal outcomes
- God can completely change and transform the expected into the unexpected.