Context: All of His men had forsaken Him. Now He was on the cross. He felt pain from old wounds & from fresh ones. Jesus can hear mocking and nasty statements. Two common criminals gnash their teeth at Him; after a while one of them has his heart changed and tells his friend to be quiet. He begins his relationship with his Maker at the end of his life…late…BUT not too late! There are women at the cross - followers of our Lord Jesus Christ. Also one of His disciples stopped running and turned around and was now at the cross. It was John, who referred to himself in his gospel as the "disciple whom the Lord loved."
It is in this light that we hear our Lord utter His third statement from the cross.
John 19:26–27 When Jesus then saw His mother, and the disciple whom He loved standing nearby, He said to His mother, “Woman, behold, your son!” Then He said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” From that hour the disciple took her into his own household.
The Lord's compassion and sense of stewardship is amazing.
Even though He is dying, He remembers His mother. Mary was a widow and Jesus’ brothers did not believe yet.
John 7:3–5 Therefore His brothers said to Him, “Leave here and go into Judea, so that Your disciples also may see Your works which You are doing. “For no one does anything in secret when he himself seeks to be known publicly. If You do these things, show Yourself to the world.” For not even His brothers were believing in Him.
Even in His death Jesus fulfilled the Law
Exodus 20:12 “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be prolonged in the land which the Lord your God gives you.
Stewardship = Jesus knew how to draw the line of forsaking and yet honoring. No human could have a special hold on the Son of God. Jesus made this clear throughout His life:
Luke 2:48–49 When they saw Him, they were astonished; and His mother said to Him, “Son, why have You treated us this way? Behold, Your father and I have been anxiously looking for You.” And He said to them, “Why is it that you were looking for Me? Did you not know that I had to be in My Father’s house?”
John 2:3–5 When the wine ran out, the mother of Jesus said to Him, “They have no wine.” And Jesus said to her, “Woman, what does that have to do with us? My hour has not yet come.” His mother said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it.”
Matthew 12:46–50 While He was still speaking to the crowds, behold, His mother and brothers were standing outside, seeking to speak to Him. Someone said to Him, “Behold, Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside seeking to speak to You.” But Jesus answered the one who was telling Him and said, “Who is My mother and who are My brothers?” And stretching out His hand toward His disciples, He said, “Behold My mother and My brothers! “For whoever does the will of My Father who is in heaven, he is My brother and sister and mother.”
Yet, He also understood the very special call God had placed on Mary to be the mother of the Messiah. So now, here as she endures a double pain, watching her son and her Savior die – He expresses His love for her and shows He knows His responsibility to her, as she was His human mother…He asks John to take care of her.
Our Lord always thought of God and then others first! There are some very important lessons we can learn here.
Parents: You have a stewardship concerning your children. You do not own them, they are on loan from God. He has entrusted you with an awesome responsibility. Raise them to honor Him, and then let them go. Every child grows into an adult that must answer to God alone and for themselves. If you interfere with that God will hold you accountable
Children: No matter where your parents stand concerning the Lord, you must learn to love the Lord, while showing honor to your parents. God will show you how to balance that if you turn to Him. He will give you guidance, especially as you move into adulthood.
Another important lesson is how engrafting of Truth allows the individual to overcome circumstances and respond correctly. Christ had engrafted God’s Truth, so even when being cruely put to death, He refused to allow the circumstances to control His behavior! When we engraft Truth our actions will come from “what we are”, not from what we are “trying to be”!
This Truth of thinking about the welfare of someone else, no matter the circumstances is the way of life God wants to conform us to.
Whether it be encouraging each other to be involved in community:
Hebrews 10:24–25 and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.
Galatians 6:1 Brethren, even if anyone is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; each one looking to yourself, so that you too will not be tempted.
Or, how we view those around us:
Philippians 2:3–4 Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.
And, even our liberty issues:
1 Corinthians 8:4–13 Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one. For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords, yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him. However not all men have this knowledge; but some, being accustomed to the idol until now, eat food as if it were sacrificed to an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled. But food will not commend us to God; we are neither the worse if we do not eat, nor the better if we do eat. But take care that this liberty of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak. For if someone sees you, who have knowledge, dining in an idol’s temple, will not his conscience, if he is weak, be strengthened to eat things sacrificed to idols? For through your knowledge he who is weak is ruined, the brother for whose sake Christ died. And so, by sinning against the brethren and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ. Therefore, if food causes my brother to stumble, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause my brother to stumble.
This Easter, let’s ask ourselves - What kind of Steward am I? Am I taking care of my biological family? Am I taking care of my Spiritual family?