Today’s Scripture: And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him: And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads. And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever. Revelation 22:3–5
When Benjamin Franklin was about to die, he asked that a picture of Christ on the cross should be placed in his bedroom so that he could look, as he said, “upon the form of the Silent Sufferer.”
Benjamin Franklin wrote in advance the epitaph that would be on his gravestone: “The body of Benjamin Franklin, Printer, like the cover of an old book, its contents torn out and stripped of its lettering and gilding, lies here. … Yet the work itself shall not be lost; for it will, as he believed, appear once more in a new and more beautiful edition, corrected and amended by the Author.”
Both physical and emotional pain seems to follow us through life. It is as if we are torn and stripped. But like old Ben, we must remember that it will be worth it all when we see Jesus.
He will bear the only physical deformity in Heaven. I believe that just as He showed His nail-scarred hands and feet and spear-scarred side to the disciples, so we will also be able to see and feel His scars. This will help us eternally remember the suffering He endured for each of us.
Adoniram Judson, the renowned missionary to Burma, endured untold hardships trying to reach the lost for Christ. For seven heartbreaking years, he suffered hunger and adversity. During this time, he was thrown into Ava Prison, and for seventeen months was subjected to almost unbelievable mistreatment. For the rest of his life, he carried the ugly marks made by the chains and iron shackles which had bound him.
Undaunted, upon his release he asked for permission to enter another province where he might resume preaching the gospel. The godless ruler indignantly denied his request, saying, “My people are not fool enough to listen to anything a missionary might say, but I fear they might be impressed by your scars and turn to your religion!”
Although I do not believe we will carry physical scars to Heaven like Christ, may we remember that if we suffer here for Him, we will be rewarded in Glory.
Devotional by Jim Scudder, Jr.