"Our passage also contains several of the "future clues" that make the prophetic books so relevant. One is Zechariah's reference to "the one they have pierced" (v. 10). In his Gospel account, John linked this verse to Jesus' death on the cross (John 19:36-37). It was the event that provided the cleansing from sin that Zechariah anticipated (Zechariah 13:1)."
I am journaling through the book titled The Essential Jesus: 100 Readings Through the Bible's Greatest Story written by Whitney T. Kuniholm. The above quote is from this book.
"And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication. They will look on me, the one they have pierced, and they will mourn for him as one mourns for an only child, and grieve bitterly for him as one grieves for a firstborn son. On that day the weeping in Jerusalem will be great ... "On that day a fountain will be opened to the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, to cleanse them from sin and impurity. (Zechariah 12:10-11, 13:1)This is an oracle and the Lord is speaking. Take notice of the flow and order of things here in this portion. Starting with grace being poured out by God on his people. Then the people will look at the Lord, who they have pierced, and mourn. Grief and weeping will overwhelm them. Then they will be cleansed from sin.
Notice the order and flow? Pouring out of grace ... seeing the Lord pierced ... mourning and weeping ... cleansing from sin.
Charles Spurgeon points out that there is a common perspective out there that any 'good' person has "a degree of tenderness of conscience, and of hatred of sin, which they ... obtain somehow" and then they are "permitted and authorized to look to Jesus Christ." This perspective claims that our own human conscience and the good in us will lead us to the truth of our sin and cause us to hate evil. Then, and only then, we can go before Christ. But this is not the pattern we see in scripture. In this passage in Zechariah we learn that people need to, according to Spurgeon, "first look upon him whom they have pierced, and then, but not till then, they mourn for their sin." The cleansing from sin (Zechariah 13:1) takes place after we look at the Son of God pierced for our rebellion, our sin, and understand the extent of the corruption in us to the point of grief.
It is a beautiful remark of an old divine, that eyes are made for two things at least; first, to look with, and next, to weep with. The eye which looks to the pierced One is the eye which weeps for him." (Spurgeon)
Jesus pierced changes us. It changes our understanding of sin. Jesus pierced as a result of human sin, our sin, changes how we look at sin. It shows us the absolute extend of sin. The injustice of the mock trial and the horrible, gruesome, tortuous execution of Jesus on a cross gives us a true and very ugly view of our sin. Knowing and understanding that he was pierced because of our sin will bring us to a point of grief that can be a life changing experience. Our own sin and rebellion will grieve us just as it grieves God.
But at the very same time the very same cross gives us a very beautiful view of the love of God. A love that forgives. A love that heals. A love that saves.
| More on the Essential Jesus journey. |
Photo credit: The photo in this post is titled "Impact". It was uploaded to flickr.com on August 25, 2005 by darkmatter.