Jeremy Camp’s song This Man has a pretty powerful lyric I had never really considered before.
> The King was placed for all the world to show disgrace,
> but only beauty flowed from this place. For some reason, as I was driving down the road recently, I was really struck by what this said. I’ve heard this song a thousand times, and it’s a great song about Jesus’ sacrificial death on the cross, but the words “The King” and disgrace really struck out to me.
King. That’s not really a word I associate with Jesus very often. What struck me is that I’m not quite sure I’ve ever fully considered Jesus as King. Sure, I know that Jesus *is* the King of the world, the the one who holds the universe together, the one in whom we live and move and have our being. But King… there’s a new word to describe the same concept. And not just any old king. The [One and Only] King. The [One and Only] King [of the World].
At the cross, I see “Jesus, the Savior of the World”. But Pilate was the first one to write that this wasn’t about Jesus as Savior, it’s also about Jesus the… *King.*
And I was really struck by the juxtaposition of King….and disgrace. Jesus… the one and only King of all that there is, humbled himself and allowed the world to show him disgrace.
Not that any of this is original, people have filled libraries writing about this. It’s just a nice reminder of Jesus’ unending humility. We often talk about the Cross as an ugly necessity, that God did this because only God could. (and, as I wrote about on Christmas, because this is the *only* way to save humanity) We also talk about it as Jesus saving the world.
That’s all absolutely true. True but incomplete. The one and only King that has ever and will ever matter… allowed himself to die on a tree, almost totally naked, between two thieves, broken, bleeding and abandoned by all.
Would you be willing to do that? I sure wouldn’t. But it’s worth growing towards. That kind of humility, literally or figuratively, is what Christ draws us towards daily. It’s ok to put aside our fear and pride and work towards that. Because The King did. He didn’t come to explain away pain and trials and suffering. He came to show a God so full of love and mercy that he is willing to endure the worst of them. And make us more like him every single day.