Thou hast known my reproach, and my shame, and my dishonour: mine adversaries are all before thee. Reproach hath broken my heart; and I am full of heaviness: and I looked for some to take pity, but there was none; and for comforters, but I found none.
The reproach that Jesus bore is truly beyond our understanding. All that He endured is more than we can fathom. The people mocked Him and spit on Him and struck Him. They hurled insults. They took His clothes and left Him exposed to the torments of the cross. And there, weighed down by this heavy burden, there was no one to have pity, no one to comfort. In this moment, He was truly alone. His friends had abandoned Him. His brethren had rejected Him. His own disciple had betrayed Him. His Father had forsaken Him.
It’s hard to imagine the heart of the Son of God so empty, so abandoned on that hill, so solitary in His misery and suffering. It’s hard to imagine His heart so shattered, His spirit so crushed. But then, it is a stark picture of what sin does to us. We become so full of reproach, shame, and dishonor. There is nothing pleasant about sin and its effects. There is no sugarcoating the cost of it, the extremes that must be endured because of it. This brutal picture of Christ on the cross is what it took to satisfy the righteous wrath of a holy God.
And then when we think that He did all that for our sake, we may be tempted to turn away in shame ourselves. But He bids us not to turn away, but to look fully upon His sacrifice, to take in every part of His agony, and realize as much as possible what He accomplished for us in that moment. This was the cost of sin demonstrated so explicitly, but then it is also love displayed more clearly than it ever could be shown. This is our own personal redemption. This is our salvation.
And so when we think no one can possibly understand, Jesus does. When we wonder if anyone cares, we can know Jesus does. When no one else will take pity, Jesus will. When we can’t find comfort anywhere, He will be our comfort. When our hearts are broken, when we are full of shame, when the heaviness is too much to bear, and we are surrounded by only enemies, Jesus will be there for us. He endured all of these things and bore the reproach to ensure that we wouldn’t have to. He hurt so much so we wouldn’t have to. He gave so much so we could have everything.