For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself…
Those words were written by the author of Hebrews–chapter 12, verse three. Who is the “Him” and exactly what “hostility” did he endure?
Verse two answers both questions:
“…fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
The word translated “endured” means “to abide under or to bear up very courageously under suffering.” The words have an “above and beyond” texture. It emphasizes that the suffering was great, but Christ’s endurance was greater. He exceedingly outlasted the suffering.
It means that His fatal suffering on the old rugged cross was not the tragic ending of a brave man, but the gracious unfolding of God’s plan. Jesus didn’t end up on those rough wooden beams by accident. This isn’t the inspirational story of an unfortunate martyr. Jesus didn’t just go through the cross, He went to the cross.
Verse two reveals that He did it “for the joy set before Him.” He joyfully super-endured in order to die for our sins.
Keeping that fact clear in my mind helps me carry on as a writer. Our Saviour endured torture and death for us, and I pray that my stories will point people to that truth. It’s just one way that I can serve the One Who loves me with an unquenchable love.
Carry on, fellow writers, for our Lord has endured–and defeated–death and darkness.