“My God, My God, Why have you forsaken me?” - Jesus // Matthew 27:46, Mark 17:24
“Father, into Your hands I commit My Spirit.” - Jesus // Luke 23:46
Standing in The Gap between two opposing forces is the very definition of intercession. When Jesus took His place upon The Cross, He experienced separation from His Father, and expressed desperation for a reunion with Him. Personal sin should bring about the same conditions in His followers.
Jesus prayed, and saturated Himself in private, personal companionship with His Father. His prayerful preparation in The Garden ended in the yielding of His will to His Father’s will, come what may. He prepared Himself to be poured out as a sacrifice on The Cross on behalf of others. Jesus did not fear His crucifixion on a physical level, as much as He abhorred the idea of spiritual separation from His Father.
These two verses of Scripture contain the prayers of Jesus on The Cross that reveal the wide range of emotions that tore at His heart and soul. He experienced His initial separation from The Father, and expressed His desperation to be received by The Father.
Sin separates the sinner from intimacy from The Father. When children sense their behavior brings pleasure to their earthly parents, they often cry out, “Daddy! Mommy! Watch me!” Child-like behavior pleases parents, but childish behavior brings no pleasure to them.
When children know their behavior is not pleasing to their parents, they hide. They fear their errant behavior might result in a rebuke from the one’s they love. Childishly, they turn their faces away from the gaze of the very ones they once sought to please. This only happens…EVERY TIME!
Note to Self: Prayerlessness should be a flashing light on your dashboard, reminding you that you have lost your way home, and that you are in need of a family reunion, with The Father.
Separation must be followed by desperation Separation is the consequence of sin. Desperation is the cure to it. Jesus was in the right place at the right time. The Cross did not feel right. It was right. Big difference. Feelings, like appearances, can be deceiving. Prayer brought Jesus to The Cross. Prayer brought Him through it. It will do the same for His followers.
The anguished words of Jesus expressed His genuine revulsion at being separated from His Father. Though He was not being punished for His own sin, He was being sacrificed to remove its consequences from others. The Father cannot have fellowship with sinful people who have strayed from His direction, protection and correction. Sin must be forgiven, by The Father before there is a reunion with Him. Jesus stood in The Gap, and prepared the way to remove the separation caused by sin.
At the very heart of sin is a spirit of rebellion resisting the will of The Father. Prayerless people do not want to face up to their own sin, so they turn their faces away from The Father. They believe if they avoid eye contact with The Father, they can postpone the reckoning they deserve. In doing so, they miss the reunion they need.
Jesus died on The Cross to deal with the consequences of sin. When He sensed His first initial separation from The Father, it tore at His heart. He was desperate for restoration, and reconciliation. His followers are marked by the same response to their own sin. Anything less than genuine revulsion with personal sin, only postpones the reunion, and continues the separation.
Separated sinners believe the whispering lies of the enemy who warns them that they would be fools to bring their sin before the eyes of The Father. Childishly, they try to hide it from Him. Jesus died on The Cross to clear the path to forgiveness. The Father seeks to forgive child-like sinners, “poor in spirit” enough, and desperate enough to be right with Him.
Jesus took sin, that was not His own, and put it where it belonged, on The Cross. Those who identify with His death on The Cross find themselves in the right place to receive forgiveness from The Father. Those who seek to hide or excuse their sin remain separated from Him.
Prayerful people are not perfect, just forgiven children. Child-like praying resists separation from The Father, not a reunion with Him. Prayer unleashes their desperation for a reunion with Him.
Bringing your sin to The Father, in the name of Jesus, removes your separation and turns your desperation into a family reunion. Jesus filled The Gap on The Cross for His followers to turn to The Father, and pray to Him. Prayer turns your desperation into restoration with The Father. TALK LESS! PRAY MORE!