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Good Friday – A Message of Love That’s So Amazing!

I am posting this as a remembrance of what He did for us 2000 years ago at the cross. His act is a message of a love that’s so amazing!

The Scientific Death of Jesus

At the age of 33, Jesus was condemned to the death penalty.

At the time crucifixion was the “worst” death. Only the worst criminals condemned to be crucified. Yet it was even more dreadful for Jesus, unlike other criminals condemned to death by crucifixion Jesus was to be nailed to the cross by His hands and feet.

Each nail was 6 to 8 inches long.

The nails were driven into His wrist. Not into His palms as is commonly portrayed. There’s a tendon in the wrist that extends to the shoulder. The Roman guards knew that when the nails were being hammered into the wrist that tendon would tear and break, forcing Jesus to use His back muscles to support himself so that He could breath.

Both of His feet were nailed together. Thus He was forced to support Himself on the single nail that impaled His feet to the cross.. Jesus could not support himself with His legs because of the pain so He was forced to alternate between arching His back then using his legs just to continue to breath. Imagine the struggle, the pain, the suffering, the courage.

Jesus endured this reality for over 3 hours. Yes, over 3 hours! Can you imagine this kind of suffering? A few minutes before He died, Jesus stopped bleeding.

He was simply pouring water from his wounds.

From common images we see wounds to His hands and feet and even the spear wound to His side.. But do we realize His wounds were actually made in his body. A hammer driving large nails through the wrist, the feet overlapped and an even large nail hammered through the arches, then a Roman guard piercing His side with a spear. But before the nails and the spear Jesus was whipped and beaten. The whipping was so severe that it tore the flesh from His body.. The beating so horrific that His face was torn and his beard ripped from His face. The crown of thorns cut deeply into His scalp. Most men would not have survived this torture.

He had no more blood to bleed out, only water poured from His wounds. The human adult body contains about 3.5 litres (just less than a gallon) of blood.

Jesus poured all 3.5 litres of his blood; He had three nails hammered into his members; a crown of thorns on his head and, beyond that, a Roman soldier who stabbed a spear into his chest.

All these without mentioning the humiliation He passed after carrying his own cross for almost 2 kilometers, while the crowd spat in his face and threw stones (the cross was almost 30 kg of weight, only for its higher part, where his hands were nailed).

Jesus had to endure this experience, so that we can have free access to God. So that our sins could be “washed” away.  JESUS CHRIST DIED FOR US… He did this because He loves us so much!

It is Finished
Petra Music
John 19:1-30
Words & Music by Bob Hartman

In the heat of early morning on a hill they call the Skull
The roaring of the angry mob had settled to a lull
All eyes were cast upon the man whose hands and feet were bound
They saw him cry in anguish when they heard the hammer pound

They saw the bloody woven thorns with which his head was crowned
They watched the bloody cross of wood be dropped into the ground
The soldiers gambled for his clothes, they watched them win and lose
They saw the sign above his head that said “King of the Jews”

(It is finished) And the sky grew black as the night
(It is finished) And the people scattered in fright
The work had been done, redemption had been won
The war was over without a fight
It is finished

They searched his face for anger for vengeance in his stare
Instead of eyes that burned with hate a look of love was there
He prayed for their forgiveness and bowed his battered head
And no one knew the meaning of the final words he said

It is finished, the provision has been made
It is finished, the foundation has been laid
He paid the ransom due and tore the temple veil in two

When I Survey the Wondrous Cross

Words: Isaac Watts, Hymns and Spir­it­u­al Songs, 1707. Charles Wes­ley re­port­ed­ly said he would give up all his other hymns to have writ­ten this one. It is significant for being an innovative departure from the early English hymn style of only using paraphrased biblical texts, although the first two lines of the second verse do paraphrase St Paul at Galatians 6:14. The poetry of “When I survey…” may be seen as English literary baroque.
When I survey the wondrous cross
On which the Prince of glory died,
My richest gain I count but loss,
And pour contempt on all my pride.

Forbid it, Lord, that I should boast,
Save in the death of Christ my God!
All the vain things that charm me most,
I sacrifice them to His blood.

See from His head, His hands, His feet,
Sorrow and love flow mingled down!
Did e’er such love and sorrow meet,
Or thorns compose so rich a crown?

His dying crimson, like a robe,
Spreads o’er His body on the tree;
Then I am dead to all the globe,
And all the globe is dead to me.

Were the whole realm of nature mine,
That were a present far too small;
Love so amazing, so divine,
Demands my soul, my life, my all.

To Christ, who won for sinners grace
By bitter grief and anguish sore,
Be praise from all the ransomed race
Forever and forevermore.

Maundy Thursday at the Desert

Today, the whole Christendom is celebrating Maundy or Holy Thursday. It is just another ordinary day here at the desert. In fact, being the first day of the month and a weekend, it is going to be busy day – beating deadlines for reports, projects, etc… a far cry from the holidays I’ve always enjoyed back home.
Whether we celebrate or not, what we call a religious observance that decorate our calendars, it serves to underscore the terrible consequences of sin looming ahead at Good Friday and also points to the hope we have in God’s grace and the new future that lies ahead on Easter Morning! For me, it will always be a celebration of grace, love and hope!
Two past events in His-story that are linked to the celebration of Holy Thursday today
Leonardo da Vinci’s The Last Supper
“Mandatum novum do vobis ut diligatis invicem sicut dilexi vos” (“A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you”), the statement of Jesus in the Gospel of John 13:34, by which Jesus explained to the Apostles the significance of his action of washing their feet.
Orthodox icon of Christ washing the feet of the Apostles
(16th century, Pskov School of Iconography).
Holy Thursday (Songs of Innocence)
Holy Thursday is a poem by William Blake, from his book of poems Songs of Innocence. (There is also a Holy Thursday poem in Songs of Experience, which contrasts this song.)
The poem depicts a religious event carried on on a Holy Thursday, in which rows of clean children dressed in cheerful clothes walk into Saint Paul cathedral in a sort of procession, guided by beadles. Citizens of London town, including the aged man, sit and observe the ceremony while thousands of little boys and girls elevate their hands and a song is raised to Heaven.

by William Blake
Twas on a Holy Thursday, their innocent faces clean,
The children walking two and two in red and blue and green,
Grey headed beadles walking before with wands as white as snow;
Till into the high dome of Paul’s they like Thames waters flow.
Oh what a multitude they seemed, those flowers of London town.
Seated in companies they sit, with radiance all their own.
The hum of multitudes was there, but multitudes of lambs
Thousands of little boys and girls raising their innocent hands.
Now like a mighty wind they raise to Heaven the voice of song,
Or like harmonious thunderings the seats of Heaven among
Beneath them sit the agéd men, wise guardians of the poor.
Then cherish pity, lest you drive an angel from your door.

The Agony of Waiting is Over as the Supreme Court Releases the 2009 Bar Exam Results Tonight

To be a lawyer was my childhood dream and I could have given that dream a shot in 2007 had I pursued my law studies. However, by fate and by choice I am here in the desert. I don’t regret my choice (maybe just sourgraping) cause if I had luckily become a lawyer, I would unendingly call my wife “Your Honor” instead of the “My Darling” endearment to her.

Waiting with excitement for the results of the Bar Exams has become an annual affair ever since I was in Diliman campus, where we would wake up early in the morning to get hold of the newspaper that carried the list of succesful examinees. There was no internet yet at that time so the newspaper was the fastest way to get the news. The only other way was to go to Padre Faura and push yourself with the mob the moment the Supreme Court posted the list, which was traditionally done at midnight. Lately, the anticipation for waiting is to look for the names of my law school classmates and friends, and also for the law students of my wife.

The journey to becoming a lawyer is an arduous trek… 4 years of law studies, many months of review, sitting in for the exams for 4 Sundays of September under the threat of floods and typhoons… and the worst thing of all is the agony of waiting for another 6 to 7 months in an objectionable position of not having any hint whether or not one has made it.

For the 2009 Bar examinees, the long wait is over with tonight’s announcement of the Supreme Court that a total of 1,451 out of 5,903 examinees (24.58%) passed the 2009 Bar Exams.

This year’s Top Ten are:
1. Reinier Paul Yebra, San Beda College (SBC), 84.88
2. Charlene Mae Tapic, SBC, 84.60
3. John Paul Lim, Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU), 84.50.
4. Caroline Lagos of the University of the Philippines (UP), 84.40
5. Eric David Tan, ADMU, 84.05
6. Yves-Randolph Gonzalez, ADMU, 83.90
7. Joan Mae To, ADMU, 83.65
8. Herminio Bagro III, UP, 83.40
9. Timothy Joseph Lumauig, ADMU, 83.20
10. Naealla Rose Bainto, ADMU, 83.10
10. Sheila Abigail Go, ADMU, 83.10.

Click here for the list of the 2009 Bar Passers.
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