Curious what kind of responses I’d get to asking what you see on this. Why was it necessary for the scars on Jesus’ hands, feet and side to remain? He was brought back from the dead but not healed??? What’s your take?
From a purely poetic, extraBiblical point of view: I think that Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross was just that: a sacrifice. It wasn’t a “oh, I’m going to take on your sins but it’s no big deal cause I’ll be perfectly alright as soon as it’s all over”. It was God Himself suffering and paying our debt. It actually cost Jesus a part of Himself, and it’s this kindness that leads us to repentance.
The scars are marks of God’s goodness and glory, that they remain (and I don’t think Jesus is incapable of making them disappear or what ever) is a sign of what he did.
They are part of what makes Jesus who He is
likewise, our scars…
scars are a visible sign of something you endured but ultimately overcame. scars are marks of honour, not shame…
to me, it’s only logical that He would wear those visible signs of what love will endure.
But what of the fact that they beat him up so badly he was unrecognizable . . .no mention of the fact that his face was disfigured . . what of the flesh-eating whip that left his back like hamburger? The only mention is his hands, feet and side. There’s a great symbolism in this. I think there’s a specific reason, beyond the fact that he wanted to show he was flesh, seriously, everything he said and did had a spiritual significance to it. I don’t think it was “just” so people would know that he wasn’t an imposter or that it was all fake. Remember our relationship is based of faith, not proof. There is an inward affirmation within all of us that makes the connection with our spirit that we are bonded in him . . .no need for outer proof of an inward transformation. I think he “gave” them proof because of his passion for us and it was always his nature to go the second mile.
I believe it has to do with the fact that “He” was the substance that the tabernacle was patterened after. Literally patterened after. I believe the reason why it was only his hands, feet and side that remained scarred was because . . . not even sure how to put this again . . .
If you were in a plane and you flew over the tabernacle . . .as you looked down on it, you’d see several crosses overlapping each other. One is from when the Israelites camped on the outside of it all. They were “assigned” to set up their camps at the same spot in correlation wth the tabernacle every time they’d made a stop. From the air, they formed a cross. That’s one, the other is, as you focus in on the 7 articles of the tabernacle, you’ll see another cross. The altar of sacrifice at the entrance in the outer court. The laver just off to one side at the veil before you enter into the holy place. Then once you’re in, the golden candle stick on the left, the table of shewbread on the right . . .then straight ahead is the altar of incense.
But it’s not just a cross. At each station, the altar of sacrifice, the laver, golden candlestick, table of shewbread and the altar of incense, each one of the represents where his body had been pierced by men. the altar of sacrifice signify his feet. The laver, the priests washed their hands in it in preparation to minister in the holy place, it contained both blood and water. Just like what came out of his side when the spear went in. Blood and water. the candlestick and table of shewbread would be each hand and the altar of incense would be where the crown of thorns was forced upon his head.
Can you see the connections?
At the east gate, the only gate to the tabernacle was the tribe of Judah . . .you couldn’t enter into the temple without going through the tribe of Judah . . .(I love this part . …) Judah means “praise”. To enter into God’s house, we can only approach him through a heart of worship.
I don’t think they’re an inherent/permanent feature of Jesus’ resurrected body. I think Jesus can, if he wishes to, manifest in his body the scares he bore prior to his resurrection.
The other option is that all post-resurrection appearances in which Jesus’ scars remained were pre-glorification but now that Christ is ascended he has received a glorified body free from all such scars.
I’m more inclined to the former, but either way…
Hmmm . . . You may have misunderstood the question . . .it wasn’t “could” Jesus have appeared without the scars . . .God created these bodies, surely he would have the power to have Jesus appear without blemish in his resurrected state. But the fact is, he “didn’t” choose to go that route so it raises the question “why?” What was the intent? I think it goes beyond the surface of the scar itself, that’s why I offered the idea of it being connected to the tabernacle which was crafted after him as well. I think it was God’s way of bringing the tabernacle’s purpose into completion.
Taking it just a step further, this wasn’t the first time Jesus revealed connections between him and the tabernacle. I believe he did it again on the mount of transfiguration. Everything about the tabernacle is spiritually symbolic of Christ in one aspect or another. We just have to take a moment and let the Spirit show us the connections. There was a lot of stuff happening on the mount of transfiguration that day. I don’t think Jesus was just showing off what he could do, he took only three of his 12 disciples . . .those whom he was closest to . . .of the 12, only three had the kind of intimacy with Jesus that enabled them to be a part of what he was about to reveal. That’s a profound picture in and of itself. It speaks to me that only a fraction of all of the “believers” out there are truly close enough to Jesus to where he reveals things to them and no one else.
That was another thing I found really strange about this passage dealing with the transfiguration . . .after it was all over, he charged the only three that were allowed to see what they saw to tell no one. Not even the other 9 disciples. Why do you suppose that he would tell him that? Are we not supposed to take the Gospel to the whole world? Why then would Jesus specifically tell these guys the very opposite? But I digress . . .
For me, the ark in the tabernacle represents the vessel of God. The mercy seat that is at rest upon it depicts the nature of God, the contents in the ark represent the “heart” of God. The manna being Christ, the stone tablets being Old Covenant law, and Aaron’s rod that budded being the prophets Israel lost 2/3 of the contents in the ark when they went to battle and abused the purpose of the whole religious system, but specifically the power in the ark. It was when Saul was king, Samuel was just coming on the scene as the spiritual judge of the nation and they were in battle with the Philistines again . . .I think it was the Philistines . . .But they were losing so they took the ark to the front lines of the battle and it encouraged those in the trenches . . .propblem was, it instilled greater fear in the enemy than it did encouragment in the Israelites and they lost the battle anyway.
They did get the ark back, but the only thing “in” the ark after that was the stone tablets. Their identity changed that day. Now, the system “became” an identity of law enforcment rather than the fullness of God’s nature including law. Until . . . .
Basically, from that time on, they’d broken God’s heart. They never retrieved the manna, nor did they ever get back Aaron’s rod. But then manna showed up in the flesh. it was time to for God’s heart toward his people to be healed. I believe that’s why the mount of transfiguratin is so profound. It shows the Manna of Jesus, the law in Moses and the prophets in Elijah coming together, uniting in one place for the first time since Israel lost the ark. It was all pointing to the restoration through what was about to take place on the cross. God got his heart back.
Nathan: Hmmm . . . You may have misunderstood the question . . .it wasn’t “could” Jesus have appeared without the scars . . .God created these bodies, surely he would have the power to have Jesus appear without blemish in his resurrected state. But the fact is, he “didn’t” choose to go that route so it raises the question “why?” What was the intent?
Tom: I don’t think it’s all that compicated really. Why can’t the reason be that the scars are needed to convince the disciples that the risen Jesus truly is one and the same as the Jesus they saw cricified (and not some ghost or vision)?
Because Jesus didn’t die for twelve guys . . .he died for the whole world. Everything he did, not just what he said, but everything he did had great spiritual significance. God is huge on symbolism. The tabernacle of Moses is the hub of symbolising Christ work on the cross and propiciation and redemption and reconciliation . . .it’s all symbolising something else that’s much deeper than just a scar on the hand.
There were specific reasons why Jesus did things the way he did, why were there “six” waterpots at the first miracle he performed? Why not 7? Why not 5? Why was “water” turned into “wine”? Was Jesus a drunkard? How could he possible condone a drunkfest? Should it not have been the other way around? Why were there specifically 6 fingers on Goliath’s hand? Why 6 toes? Why point that out at all? Symbolism . . .everything is about symbolism. That’s the international language of God. Romans 1:20 states that God uses natural means to reveal spiritual truths.
It’s not because God want’s to overcomplicate things and it’s not that these things “are” complicated. But I think it’s more about relationships. When I first met my wife, I was attracted to her and wanted to “get to know her BETTER”. I wasn’t satisfied with just knowing “about” her. I wasn’t satisified with just what people said about her according to how well “they” knew her, I wanted to get to know her better for myself. It required more than just seeing her in a blue shirt . . .it has so much more meaning to it when you realize that her favorite color is blue, that this shirt was special to her because her favorite cousin bought it for her just before they passed . . .but I never would have been able to appreciate that had I not gotten to know her on a deeper level.
It’s the same with God’s Word . . .not just Scripture, but I think God’s word “starts” with Scripture and then it matures from words on a page to truth from within. It’s not complicated, it’s just multi-dimensional. So, Jesus had scars . . .that’s like saying there’s a pretty girl wearing a blue shirt . .nothing complicated . . .but when you get into a deeper relationship, more details about those scars are revealed, not complicating things, but giving me a greater appreciation for seeing just how thorough God was in bringing things into completion and full circle.
Nathan: Why were there “six” waterpots at the first miracle he performed?
Tom: Because that’s how many there were, probably because that’s how many the family owned, or that’s how many they set aside for their wedding. There doesn’t need to be some spiritual significance to the number. But that’s just me.
I think the Bible is more like iconographic art than modern science and history. If it’s a work of art, we can expect to find meaning in all sorts of seemingly random details. But there’s a problem. Fred thinks a certain detail signifies X. Bob thinks it signifies Y. As with all artistic appreciation, once the artist is dead and gone, it becomes very hard to know exactly what he had in mind.
I was reading through and saw this sentence. It brought to mind the following passage.
My point too AaronK. The scars were there for those that needed them. Beyond that I don’t see the need.
I do think that some will only believe once they see, but there is great benefit for those who believe without seeing. The scars serve as a visual of the suffering of our Lord.
That’s not to say, however, that the scars are not also symbolic - I believe that truth has many layers. I enjoy Nathan’s ideas of why the scars are there as well.
I guess I would say that I don’t see mutual exclusivity between the two ideas… I only intended to say that for some, seeing is believing… and the scars have served to that end.