Irony Was In The Air Kendall Lankford
March 27, 2018
When you look deeply into the events of Jesus' death, you will find the most bitter and beautiful irony...
The irony of His death runs so deep that we cannot avoid it. We cannot sanitize it. We dare not simply wear a cross-shaped emblem around our necks and minimalize it.
We must deal with what really happened on that day.
To do that, let us start in the garden…
As Jesus knelt to pray in the garden of Gethsemane, He knew He was going to die. Now isn't that ironic? For it was in a garden where all of life began, and now the author of human life was about to die. In a place that originally had no sorrow and tears, Jesus was anxiously shedding tears of blood. In a place where humanity was made to have fellowship with God, Jesus anxiously awaited being separated from Him. And unlike the man who had a companion right beside Him (Eve), Jesus’ companions were fast asleep.
Irony was CERTAINLY in the air...
And while humanity chose the fruit of sin, Jesus chose the fruit of righteousness. While men throughout history had despised God, Jesus perfectly loved and followed Him. While people have acted in their own authority, like Adam, Jesus walked every moment under the authority of the Father. While Adam failed to walk successfully through his garden, Jesus walked faithfully through His!
And what gain was that for Christ?
Certainly one would think that Christ's victory would be for His benefit. That there would be some great reward for His success. But, only irony remains. While Adam was allowed to live, Jesus came to die. While Adam walked away, Jesus Christ was dragged out of the garden in chains. While Adam got the mercy he didn’t deserve, an infinite injustice was heaped upon the Lord of glory!
Try to imagine the scene, Adam was escorted peaceably out of the garden for His own protection, while Jesus had no one to protect Him. In fact, He was betrayed by His closest friend, abandoned by his brothers, killed by the ones who claimed to know His Father.
Can you see the irony? While God protected the guilty man from angelic flaming swords in Eden, violent men came unabated, with flaming torches and swords, against the Son of God in Gethsemane! The same God who walked and talked with His people, is now under arrest, mocked, tried, killed!
The Irony Continues...
If this were not enough, remember that the sin of man had wide-reaching consequences on God's perfect world. For instance, sin brought a curse upon the womb of woman, so that pain, infertility, still borns, miscarriages, down-syndromes, and perfectly healthy sinners all sprang forth from her fallen body. And yet here we are presented with a man, Jesus, conceived of the Holy Spirit, born of a virgin, coming back into the garden to make all things new again. Coming back to restore a creation that sprouts thorns and thistles by taking the thorns and thistles upon His own head.
By the sweat of the one man’s brow, the thorns were plucked, but by the blood of Jesus’ brow the thorns were shoved. To redeem the entire cosmos.
Even the animals awaited,
eagerly fixated, upon the Son of man. Why? Because long ago the animal died to clothe the nakedness of man, and now the Son of Man was being ripped apart just like that animal of old. He was stripped naked and ashamed to do so much more than clothe our flesh. He was skinned alive by the whip of bone and glass, treated like the animal that covered Adam, to clothe us in His royal robes of righteousness.
Yes, Irony was in the air!
Even the fact that Jesus Christ was nailed onto a wooden cross, screams of bitter horrifying irony! For Adam brought judgment on the entire world through one tree, ONE TREE!! A tree that was known for the knowledge of good and evil, now this Jesus was taking all of that evil upon Himself on a Roman cross-shaped tree.
And while Adam fell eating a beautiful delicious fruit, Jesus’ lips dripped with sour wine as He uttered His final words.
IT IS FINISHED!
His death signaled the death of the entire old world system. His death began a process whereby the entire heavens and earth will be made new! Like the plants that broke through the earth on the third day of creation - the very first fruits - Jesus broke out of the grave on the third day as the first fruits of a new creation. His death forgave us our sins, made us into a church, but also signaled the re-creation of everything! He walked through His garden, to bring us back to the garden with God! By this man Jesus, every single thing that Adam lost, will soon come back to all of us through Him and Him alone!
What a beautiful and glorious irony
Revelation 22:1-5 says:
Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign forever and ever.