989-662-6314 office@auburnumc.org

Read:  Ephesians 3:18-19

18 I pray that you may have the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

“Were you there when they crucified my Lord?”  …

“Were you there when they nailed Him to the cross?”  …

“Were you there when they pierced Him in the side?”  …

“Were you there when the sun refused to shine?”  …

“Were you there when they laid Him in the tomb?”  …

This great Afro-American folk hymn is such a profound and powerful hymn.  It takes us to the foot of the cross of Christ, a place so terrifying and intimidating that only the (teenage boy, preteen?) disciple John, out of all of Jesus’ 12 disciples, could safely be there.  The women were there too, they were often “there”, though not considered part of the “12”; they were certainly Jesus disciples too (Acts 1:14-15).  The “Mary’s” were there:  Mary the mother of Jesus; Mary of Magdala; Mary and Martha from Bethany; and Mary the mother of James the younger (Note:  The name “Mary” was common and was “Miriam” (Moses’ sister) in the Old Testament).  Anyway, what a powerful scene.  The hymn ends each line, “sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble…were you there when they crucified my Lord?”.  “Tremble”, I think that would begin to describe how I might feel and respond.

It is still not easy to follow the story, and walk the path of Christ toward Jerusalem.  Yet it is SO important in understanding the depth of Christ’s love and grace, and the central purpose of His mission to prove God’s love and redeem humanity.

Everyone loves the celebration of Easter morning.  That’s when we proclaim, “Christ is alive!”  and “He is risen!”.  We rightfully have joy in Jesus’ victory over sin and death.  But I want to encourage you to walk through events of Passion Week by attending the special worship services that we have planned.  It will begin with Palm Sunday, continue on Holy Thursday, take us to cross on Good Friday, and then, finally, to the celebration of Christ’s resurrection.  This walk of faith will deepen your understanding of Christ’s life and God’s fathomless love for all people.

Shalom, Pastor Rob