We’ve all seen/heard part of the discussion on the importance of marriage equality. I’m glad others are standing up for what they believe in, or standing up to support loved ones. I hope you continue to do so. I also understand the passion that people feel right now because of what is currently happening within our government. It’s a historical moment. For me, as I followed the conversation this week, I had a few thoughts about “equality” in general that I wanted to share.
The first thought that surfaced was “[Jesus], though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” This is a beautiful picture. The most powerful human in the world took the form of a servant.
Jesus’ death wasn’t fair. We are in the middle of Holy Week which leads up to the death and resurrection of Jesus. His death was an unjust death that brought forgiveness to the entirety of an undeserving humanity through resurrection. To focus on equality is to focus on what is fair. When Jesus died, he wasn’t thinking about fairness. “[God] made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” That’s not fair at all! But that is exactly what Jesus did.
Because of this, we are equal in the forgiveness we receive from Jesus. Jesus was the perfect example. “He was pierced for our transgressions” - all of us. He died to forgive us for everything bad we have done and all the bad we can ever do (this includes your Facebook friends that you disagree with). And beyond that, Jesus’ disciples took His message to everyone who would listen, until they themselves were killed for the same message. That’s not fair either.
Even if you don’t believe it, reflect on this kind of love. Regardless of where you’re coming from, regardless of what you’ve done, who you think you are, who others think you are: Think about the kind of love that says to you, “I know you, all of you, and I love you so much I’m willing to die for you.” That’s what Jesus is saying.
The actions of Christians are not equal to the character of Jesus. This is a grave mistake because I am not equal with Jesus. I can do my best to love you but I will always let you down. I can’t help it. But Jesus doesn’t just share love - He is love. Everything about his essence IS love. This means that Jesus is patient, and he is kind. He doesn’t envy, He doesn’t boast, He isn’t proud. He doesn’t dishonor others, He is not self-seeking, He is not easily angered, He keeps no record of wrongs. He doesn’t delight in evil but rejoices in truth. He always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and He always perseveres. I am not equal to Jesus yet through his death, He made me His equal in the eyes of God.
With this being Holy Week, I just wanted to encourage you to reflect on what Jesus has done for you, regardless of what is considered “fair”.