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Man Of Sorrows

There is an account in the third chapter of Genesis which does not refer primarily to the Lord Jesus, but we can hardly read it without thinking of Him. I refer to the curse which Adam brought upon himself because of his disobedience. God said,

Because thou host hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and host eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in toil shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; in the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.

What a sad, sad tale. In the sweat of his brow he would toil to produce from the ground sufficient to eat, but along with the plants there would grow thorns and thistles to hinder his work, and in the end he would return to the dust from which his body had been taken. And so it was, exactly as God had said. But thankfully, not for all time. Oh no, for as soon as Adam fell God was right there with His promise of a Saviour. What wonderful love, loving His creatures still, despite their rebellion. And in the fulness of time God sent forth His Son, born of a woman. He took a body like ours, and in that human body He bore all the sorrows which have come upon man as a result of sin.

Yes, the sweat, the sorrows, the toil, the tears. He took His part in all of them. A man of sorrows He was, and well acquainted with grief. In Gethsemane's garden His soul was exceeding sorrowful even to death, and as He poured out His heart to God in heaven, the sweat came from His forehead like drops of blood. And then rough soldiers came and took Him to Pilate's hall and He allowed them to mock Him both clothing Him in a purple robe and taking a crown of twisted thorns they pressed it on His brow. Friends who have visited the holy land tell me these thorns still grow in the hedgerows, long flexible thorns which can easily be twisted into the shape of a crown. And Matthew tells us that when they had crowned Him and knelt before Him in mockery, they took the reed Out of His hand and smote Him on the head, doubtless driving the thorns deeper into His brow.

When men had done their worst, God dealt with Him in those lonely hours of darkness when He made His soul an offering for sin. And He said "Thou hast brought Me into the dust of death". But, "with His stripes we are healed"!