It can be hard to keep our mouths shut. Would you agree? We complain about potholes. We complain about the weather. We complain about the cost of healthcare. We’re quick to snap back whenever something seems unfair—especially unfair to us! How many investigations? How many accusations? How many rallies and protests and demonstrations? Think about what we’re told to do: “Stand up for yourself!” “Don’t take “no” for an answer.” “Don’t let anybody push you around!”
Whom is every one of those statements focused on? You! One of the greatest effects of sin is that it makes us think the world revolves around us. At least it should! When things don’t go our way, it’s hard to keep our mouths shut!
Here’s where our sinful nature really kicks in: How often do we open our mouths against God? “Why me?” “I deserve better!” “God you’re not fair.” “If I were you, God,….” “I can do it on my own.” Sound familiar? What should God do? Crush us! Or just turn his back and walk away. It can be hard to keep our mouths shut.
That’s why this is one of the most amazing things about our Savior Jesus as he carried our sins to the cross: He did not open his mouth. “He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth” (Isaiah 53:7). Jesus stayed silent. How?
During his trial, Jesus was falsely accused of our sins—again and again. How do you feel when others falsely accuse you? Your blood boils, right? Jesus? “He did not open his mouth.” People laughed at Jesus and mocked him, “He saved others, so let him save himself!” How do you feel when others mock you? Steaming mad! Jesus? “He did not open his mouth.” Jesus had every right to object. To complain. To fight for his rights. But what did he do? “He did not open his mouth.”
Why? Because he loves you. If Jesus had opened his mouth during his trial, he could have easily proved his innocence. But then he wouldn’t have suffered and died for us. Jesus knew what was at stake. Somebody needed to die for our sins—Jesus or us! And whom did Jesus choose? Jesus. So he kept silent through the accusations and the mocking. Through the beatings and the nails. Until on Easter, when he finally open his mouth and said, “Peace be with you.” And he meant it! Real peace for us through Jesus’ death and resurrection. Our silent Savior saved us!
So now you and I have every reason to open our mouths. Are people in your life concerned about injustice? Are they concerned about sin? You have the answer! It’s Jesus! Jesus could shout out from heaven all he has done, but instead he wants to use us and our mouths. May it be hard to keep our mouths shut this Easter. Whom can you tell? Whom can you invite? May churches be filled with eager voices praising our silent Savior!