Recently, I was listening to the audiobook "The Well-Watered Woman" by Gretchen Saffles. She discussed a topic that really pulled at my heart strings and got me thinking a little more deeply.
"Then to Adam He said, "Because you heeded the voice of your wife, and you ate from the one tree of which I commanded you, saying, 'You shall not eat from it', cursed is the ground in your labors. In toil you shall eat from it all the days of your life. Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, and you shall eat the herb of the field..."
- Genesis 3:17-18
This was the first natural consequence in the Bible. Just as children inevitably disobey their parents and receive a consequence for their disobedience, so Adam and Eve received their consequence. The Lord told them the earth would "bring forth thorns and thistles". Why would God do this to His children? Was it a punishment? No, not a punishment, God is not petty nor does He need to prove His power.
God used the disobedience of Adam and Eve as a lesson to His children.
All of us, His children, have thorns in our lives. Thorns grow when we are jealous of someone. Thorns grow when we are bitter toward someone who has betrayed us. Thorns grow when we are angry at God for unanswered prayers. Thorns grow when we endure our earthly woes such as divorce, death, gossip, lying, stealing, hatred.
At Jesus Christ's crucifixion and earthly death, a crown of thorns was placed on His pure, sinless head. As those thorns pressed so painfully into His scalp, each one represented the different sins we, His children, commit and the sorrows, and sufferings that we live through as we walk in our individual lives every day.
Christ, on the cross wearing the excruciating crown of thorns, suffered for our pain and our hardship that day. He wore on His head the disobedience of Adam and Eve in the garden, the sins of the men and women and all humanity both in His time and today. The crown of thorns was intricately woven with the sins of each of us; each of those thorns was our consequence that He so painfully felt. Christ endured that pain for us to relieve us of our earthly sins, concerns, worries and cares. He did that to teach us that the pain we feel on earth is meant to point us back to Christ; to teach us to pray, to forgive, to be more like Him. He gracefully suffered and sacrificed His life for all of us to show us His unconditional love and to give us hope for our futures, no matter the difficulties we face in this earthly life.
We all wear our own unseen crown of thorns. We all have trials and tribulations. We all sin, hurt others, hurt ourselves, weep, pray, fear, lose faith, lose trust. We suffer the loss of family members, lose children, lose friends, lose our jobs, lose our path. Thorns.
Christ wore a crown of thorns for us because He knew the hardships we, His children, would face. And when we feel the pains of this life, we must remember that Jesus Christ, our Heavenly Father, no longer wears a crown of thorns. He now wears a crown of glory. A crown of hope for our future, in Him.
"For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many"