One of the great consolations of this Easter season is that because Jesus walked such a long, lonely path utterly alone, we do not have to do so.
I speak of the Savior's solitary task of shouldering alone the burden of our salvation. I speak of those final moments for which Jesus must have been prepared intellectually and physically, but which He may not have fully anticipated emotionally and spiritually that concluding descent into the paralyzing despair of divine withdrawal. When He cries in ultimate loneliness, "My God, my God why hast Thou forsaken me?"
Thus, of divine necessity, the supporting circle around Jesus gets smaller and smaller and smaller. Essentially, His lonely journey back to His father continued without comfort or companionship. It was required, indeed it was central to the significance of the atonement, that this perfect son who had never spoken ill nor done wrong nor touched an unclean thing, He had to know how the rest of humankind would feel, us, the rest of us.
Then finally and mercifully, it was finished. Against all odds and with none to help or uphold him, Jesus of Nazareth, the living Son of the living God restored physical life where death had held sway and brought joyful spiritual redemption out of sin and hellish darkness and despair. One of the great consolations of this Easter season is that because Jesus walked such a long, lonely path utterly alone, we do not have to do so.
As we approach this holy week, Passover Thursday with its paschal lam, atoning Friday with it's cross, Resurrection Sunday with its empty tomb, may we declare ourselves to be more fully disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ, not in word only and not in the flush of comfortable times but in deed and in courage and in faith. May we stand by Jesus Christ at all times and in all things and in all places that we may be in, even until death. For surely that is how He stood by us when it was unto death, and when He had to stand entirely and utterly alone in the sacred name of Jesus Christ. Amen.