This past weekend, I took a drive up to Crockett, TX to help a good friend tow a boat that was dead in the water. I thought nothing of it. It was no big deal to me to do this. In fact, I enjoy being on the water so much that it didn’t even feel like work. I didn’t really feel like I was doing him any favors…more that I was just spending a day on the water. My wife, and my parents were there too. After we wrapped everything up with his boat, we decided to head out for dinner. We stopped at a Seafood restaurant where the food was superb. When it came time for the check, before I could ask the waiter to make sure and split my wife and I on to our own check, my good friend had already taken care of the tab. The first thing I said to him was “…that’s not necessary…”. He simply replied that he appreciated the help we gave him that day so much and wanted to do something in return for that. I could only think that this was absolutely absurd. What help had we provided? We drove a boat with another one tied behind it? In my mind, it didn’t make sense that he would offer such a financial sacrifice for all of us when I didn’t feel we deserved it. Nevertheless, I thanked him, we parted ways, and that was that.
This morning on my drive in to work, I was listening to Ascend the Hill’s album, Take the World, But Give Me Jesus. This is an album of their rendition of various old hymns. When the song How Great Thou Art came on, my heart sank and I couldn’t help but repeat the song the rest of the way to work, particularly this verse:
“And when I think, that God, His Son not sparing;
Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in;
That on the Cross, my burden gladly bearing,
He bled and died to take away my sin.”
My mind began to race and I began to think how absurd this was. The words “I scarce can take it in” describe my thoughts exactly. I felt like I couldn’t accept this, I couldn’t make sense of this, it was an action from God that was by definition, ABSURD! I guess before moving on I should define this word to make my point:
absurd: (according to Webster’s dictionary) ridiculously unreasonable, unsound
To think that God, the absolute definition of perfection, would take His son, the absolute embodiment of that perfection, and allow him to be tortured and murdered, so that we, a world full of rapists, whores, drug dealers, liars, adulterers, murderers, child molesters, debaucherous, flat out wicked and sinful people, could have a shot at paradise. Tell me what part of this seams at all reasonable or sound? And yet….it happened….it was very real….and it is just that simple.
“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” – Romans 5:8 NASB
God’s love is at the root of all of this. God has such a love for us, that he would go to absurd measures to ensure that we can be with HIm again one day. Which of us wouldn’t go to absurd measures to help those that we love? To help those closest to us, even if they may not deserve it?
God, who is perfection, looked at us, who are the definition of imperfection and said that we are worth it. We are worth the torture and death His son would endure. We are worth it.
Yes, the gospel is absurd….and that is the most beautiful truth in the world. If God did what was reasonable….we wouldn’t stand a chance. But God works outside of our comprehension of reason….thank God for His absurdity!