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Sozo in Isolation
Our streets are quiet this Easter Weekend. During this time where social distancing is the norm, I am reminded that Jesus knows our feeling of isolation and loneliness. Isaiah 53:3 says that He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.
In the Garden of Gethsemane and at the cross, Jesus himself experienced apparent loneliness and abandonment from God, which can be described as his darkest hour. In the midst of chaos, and facing pain, Jesus knew that in all these things God was in control.
At Calvary, by his suffering, death and resurrection, Jesus took our sin, our sickness, our loneliness for us. Jesus experienced extreme separation from God (Matt 27:45-46) in order to pay the price to give us the best gift exchange found in His resurrection––Salvation.
Such salvation not only encompasses eternal life but a divine exchange that allows us to live an overcoming life during this pandemic. God has given us everything we need in this life and in the life to come. Salvation is not merely access to heaven and forgiveness of sins but much more.
A close study of the word salvation in its original Greek, sozo, helps us understand it is an all-encompassing salvation. The word is used 110 times in the New Testament, and in some instances it was used to signify “save” or “saved”, “healed”, “restored to”, “to deliver”, “to protect”, “to preserve”, “to do well”, and “be (made) whole”.
From the moment that Jesus said “it is finished” on the cross, as believers we receive a vast exchange of sozo salvation. At the Cross, Jesus saved, delivered, healed, made us whole and He exchanged:
Our sinfulness for His Righteousness (2 Corinthians 5:21)
Our rebellion for restored fellowship with Him (John 17:22)
Our sickness and wounds for divine health (1 peter 2:24)
Our sorrow and regrets for His hope (Isaiah 53:4, Colossians 1:27)
Our anxiety and depression for His joy, peace and soundness of mind (Philippians 4:4-7)
Our poverty for His Riches and abundance (2 Corinthians 8:9)
Our fear of rejection for adoption into His family (Matt. 27:46, Ephesians 1:5)
Our eminent death for eternal life (Romans 6:23)
“Our Lord Jesus Christ… gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father” (Galatians 1:4). We can have full trust that He has already delivered and made us whole in a broken world, receiving every spiritual blessing.
We are asked to try to remain indoors as much as possible; the economy may be on hold, whatever situation you are in, you will survive this crisis by receiving the great exchange––sozo salvation––from the only One who understands your struggles––Jesus. He will give you everything you need to overcome this pandemic season.