So much of the “snowflake” stuff coming off of college campuses is laughable, if sad. But comes news from the UK that things are taking a far more serious turn. The Telegraph:
The University of Glasgow, part of the elite Russell Group, has introduced the warnings to its theology students studying Creation to Apocalypse: Introduction to the Bible (Level 1).
In one lecture about Jesus, it warned students it “contains graphic scenes of the crucifixion” adding that it would be flagged up to students beforehand.
Apparently we are now protecting students from the most significant event in western history, and if you are a serious Christian an event of cosmic implications. This is not laughable anymore.
The Crucifixion of Jesus Christ is, to Christian understanding, the greatest act of love – ever. It is God Himself willfully allowing Himself to die on our behalf. There have been volumes written on the significance of this event. But in this post I do not want to focus on the theology of the Cross, rather I want to focus on the Cross as an act of sacrificial love.
I was long a Christian when I was first confronted with the brutal realities of Jesus’ crucifixion. It is far more than gruesome execution, it is a form of torture that results in execution. For its victims it is both humiliating and agonizing.
I attended a lecture one time in which the speaker was discussing the Roman destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70. The speaker’s summary comments said plainly, “Do not mess with the Romans; they will kill you painfully then resurrect you just to do it again.” Crucifixion was that practice polished to a fine art.
Normally crucifixion took many painful days; Christ was lucky that it only took Him hours to die. The agony is extraordinary as joints slowly, one-by-one, separate until the victim suffocates under the weight of his own body – no longer able to support it. And all this, with the attendant lack of control over normal bodily functions, happens in full, scornful public view.
Yes, crucifixion is shocking, gruesome, and horrific. And the more you understand that, the more you understand just how much God actually loves us. Did I cry when I first learned all this, and more, detail about crucifixion? You bet your bottom-dollar I did! But I did not do so because of the horror – I did so because of the overwhelming sensation of God’s loving presence this information gave me. God went through that for me – and for you.
To deny students of that impact is to deny them the gospel truth.
It’s baffling – nothing can give one a better sense of contentment and fulfillment than resting in the loving arms of the Almighty. And yet for the sake of their apparent contentment we would deny students understanding of just how loving those arms really are. That’s not funny, and it is beyond sick. Such “protection” threatens our deepest understanding of who we are, who God is, and our relationship to Him. That’s playing with fire.