Our Champion

I was reading a post from Path Without End where he mentioned that Jesus was our champion and it spawned this post.

We have all kinds of champions in life.  The one we think of most when we think of a champion a sporting event winner.  They call the winner of the Super Bowl, or the World Series, or the NBA finals World Champions!  I always found that strange because they don’t play an teams from around the world!  I know that football is a North American sport (our brand of football), but the don;t even match teams up to play for the World Championship with any teams from the Canadian Foot League!  How can they be World Champions?  Or in baseball – it is played in many other countries, yet those countries are not included in the World Series.  The only true World Champion would be the winner of the World Cup, which includes all countries with organized soccer teams.

Individual sporting events also bring us Champions.  Tennis matches, such as Wimbledon and the US Open; golfing events such as the Masters and British Open ad Boxing are all played on a worldwide stage.Other sports are more regional or by country, but they still call the winners champions.

Then there are real life champions.  Those who pioneer a cause or help people out of difficult circumstances can be champions.  I think of Martin Luther King Jr as a champion of the civil rights movement, along with Rosa Parks.  I think of T. J. Watt who personally raised over 33 million dollars for Houston Hurricane relief.  I think of those first responders who gave their lives at 9?11 to save others.  These are all champions and this list goes on forever.

In my own life, I have to say my best friend is my champion.  We have known each other for 60 years and through thick and thin have remained friends.  He saved my life when he pulled me out of an icy pond when we were 9.  He fought on the front lines of Vietnam when he got out of high school.  He brought me to Jesus Christ in his mobile home when we were in our twenties.  He led the attack on Baghdad from the air during Desert Storm.  He has become a mighty prayer warrior my life, and he encourages me in the faith.  He is my champion as well.

M wife is also my champion.  She is my wonderful companion. She is an amazing caregiver.  She is always watching out for my best interests.  She works hard at two jobs all the time – over 60 hours a week.  She is by my side in the good times and the bad, and shows her love to me all the time.  My champion!

As wonderful as all these champions are, they do not compare to the greatest champion of all.  He was seated beside God in heaven one day, and God asked him to come to earth and die for our sins.  God told his son that he would be born a simple child in a manger bed, amidst the livestock and shepherds of the day.  He would not even have a bed and a pillow to lay on.  He would be wrapped in old clothes, not a nice blanket.

He told His son that he would be raised by a carpenter and no-one would know who He really was.  He would learn that trade and work at it for 30 years, becoming a master craftsman.  Then he would go visit his cousin and be baptized, and God would reveal who he was.  H would then spend 40 days in the wilderness and just talk to His Father about what His mission was.

He would then come back and start teaching the people he ways of God.  He would heal all who came to him, with all kinds of maladies.  He would be persecuted by the religious leaders of the day, and be riddled with questions about his real message.

God told his son that after three and a half years of this ministry, he would be tried in court as a blasphemer of the Jewish laws and found guilty.  After that he would face the Roman authorities and they will decide to let the crowd of Jews determine his fate.  Those same Jews who he had healed and taught would cry out to have him crucified.

Then God told his son that he would be whipped mercilessly, a crown of thorns would be dug into his scalp, he would be beaten and spit upon, he would have to carry his cross to Calvary,  God told him nails would be driven through his hands and feet and the cross would be dropped into the ground.  God told him he would darken the skies, and that he would die before the end of day.  And God told him he would rise from the dead to return to the Him.

God old him all of this would need to be done because he would also carry the whole weight of sin upon him when he want to the cross.  He would be the redeeming sacrifice for all of mankind.  The sacrifices in the temple for sin were only a picture of things to come.  God’s son would be the redeeming sacrifice for everyone.  He would be the Lamb of God who died for the sins of all mankind.

After telling his son all this, God asked Jesus if He would do this thing.  Jesus looked at His Father and said “Yes, I will go, because I love these people”.  He came to this earth and everything his Father had told Him came true, and a lot more.  He loved the people as he served them during His ministry, and he faced the cross with the strength of a Champion.

Jesus is our true Champion.  He is the Champion of all mankind.  There is no greater Champion than Him and there never will be.  I was reminded of this song by Carman that some of you may have heard before.  Tt is called “The Champion”.  I end with this.

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