By the Mad Preacher
This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. (1 John 3:16)
I was beginning to feel that I was the only person on the planet who hadn’t seen Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ. Quite frankly, I was torn about seeing it. A part of me wanted to see it in a big way. Yet, another part of me did not want to see it. It wasn’t the talk about the graphic violence in the movie that held me back. I’ve watched too many graphic war films over the years for that to bother me.
I’ve given my sense of reluctance some careful consideration and have come to a conclusion. To be quite honest, I believe that the baser part of my human nature did not want me to see it. The simple truth is that the twisted part of human nature did not want me to be reminded, in vivid detail, of the terrible price Christ paid for my sin. If we would honestly admit it, we would have to say this is true of us all. You see, being reminded of the cross tends to make that fallen part of our nature uncomfortable, and we certainly don’t want to feel uncomfortable.
Having now seen it, I’m reminded of the words of the classic song, Too High a Price, written by Phil McHugh and Greg Nelson.
Your love endured the cross
Despising all the shame
That afternoon when midnight fell
Your suffering cleared my name
And that sin-swept hill
Became the open door to paradise
The cost was great yet you paid the price.
You paid much too high a price for me
In tears and blood and pain
To have my soul just stirred at times
Yet never truly change
You deserve a fiery love
That won’t ignore your sacrifice
Because you paid much too high a price.1
To be perfectly frank, I admit that I feel very uncomfortable each time I hear Larnell Harris’s stirring rendition of this moving song. It pierces my heart and I’m drawn to a fresh repentance whenever I hear the words “you deserve a fiery love that want to ignore your sacrifice.” I must say that it deeply shames me to confess that my love for my wonderful LORD is not always fiery. Indeed, He deserves better from me. Jesus is worthy of so much more from me than to, “have my soul just stirred at times, yet never truly change.”
Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. (1John 3:18)
I’ll never know how much it cost
To see my sin upon that cross 2
Jesus gave His very best for us. Now, are you giving your best to Him? Dare we give him anything less than a fiery love?
1 Too High a Price ©1985 Careers – BMG Music, Inc. (Admin. by BMG Music Publishing) River Oaks Music Company (a div. of EMI Christian Music Publishing) Greg Nelson Music (Admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing)
2 Here I Am To Worship words and music: Tim Hughes © 2000 Kingsway’s Thankyou Music (PRS)/admin. by EMI Christian Music Pub