The Time of conquering
Journal written by Melissa Smith
The cross and all that it represents is so much more than a piece of candy sold at any convenience store . To try to sum it up in words seems impossible to me. The cross is where Jesus realized His purpose for being on this earth. We all know that He came to save you and I from a life lived in darkness. His unfathomable love for us prompted Him to take on our sins and make Himself the ultimate sacrifice for them. The cross is where Jesus conquered the world (John 16:33).
We've been taught that Jesus died for our sins. But, it was so much more than that.
Jesus was and is our conqueror.
Not only has He forgiven us of all things (past, future and present), but He overcame every curse, disease, and mental battle we have faced or would ever face. He defeated alcoholism, drug addiction, and sexual addiction. He eradicated our shame and sorrow. He annihilated depression, anxiety and self-loathing. He took on cancer, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s. His defeat of death wasn't just so we could have eternal life. His death brought us life in all of who we are. Our life on earth and a life spent in eternity.
A while ago I was ruminating about this very thing. The fact that Jesus, part of the Trinity; the Son part of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, chose to become flesh and experience life with all of the trappings of man. He allowed Himself to be given over to a group of people who hated Him and wanted to kill Him. He endured mental and physical abuse before being nailed to a cross of wood. A crown of thorns was embedded on his head. The impact of this reality alone brings me anguish and a gratitude that I cannot explain.
Luke 23:44-45 describes what I think of as "the time of conquering." It says, "It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness fell over the whole land until the ninth hour, because the sun was obscured; and the veil of the temple was torn in two. (NASB) As I was thinking about all of this and trying to picture what was happening at that point, the Lord gave me a glimpse of what was spiritually happening at that time. I saw Jesus hanging on the cross, His head bowed from exhaustion. The sky grew dark and dark shadows began to appear. I knew these were the powers of darkness representing all of the sins and burdens of this world. These shadows began attacking Jesus as He hung on the cross. They pierced His body and went deep into His soul. The pain He felt from the mental anguish of all He was battling was evident.
A few weeks later I was watching a rebroadcast of a Joseph Prince message and at the end He spoke about imagery of the crucifixion that God had put on his heart. He then showed a video that floored me. The video he created along with his production team illustrated what I had seen. It was a more complete picture, but the core of what I had been shown was there.
Easter is so much more than candy, egg hunts and cute little bunnies. The cross and the three hour time period that Jesus hung unable to lift His head cannot be summed up in a few words. Jesus gave His life; He conquered all darkness so we could be given life. Life in Him and through Him. The physical reality of Him hanging on the cross belies the spiritual reality of Him conquering the grave.