The focus of this post deals with the issue of brokenness. It is quite easy to adapt the belief that restoration is impossible. And that leaves many of us in brokenness or despair. Those who see themselves as permanently broken cannot progress from their depressed state. That is why we’ll be exploring a new angle on the mental health issue of depression, and despair, in this post.
The Purple Robe
To approach this issue, I must start at the cross. In the landscape of the Biblical narrative, there is one event that ties EVERYTHING together. That event is the cross of Calvary where Jesus Christ was crucified.
Jesus Christ is God and He came down to Earth in the flesh as a human being with one purpose in mind. His purpose was to provide an atoning sacrifice for mankind. You see, humanity is flawed. And we have all sinned or done something which isn’t right.
And so, to accept an imperfect, far from godly-natured, beloved people into God’s presence in Heaven, is impossible without an atoning sacrifice. That is why Jesus Christ made it His mission to experience the hell which we deserve, on the cross.
Now, pharisees and religious leaders pressured the Romans of that time, to crucify Jesus. They could not help but be jealous of His perfect nature, and persisted in the belief that they are good enough to enter Heaven, all by themselves.
They detested change, and so, the same devil who tempted mankind in the garden of Eden, inspired a hellish hatred within the hearts of the people. But, God used that hatred to His advantage as the devil could not understand how Jesus Christ is the atoning sacrifice for those who are lost.
And so, it is with this premise, that I want to introduce the below scripture to you.
John 19:5 King James Version (KJV)
5 Then came Jesus forth, wearing the crown of thorns, and the purple robe. And Pilate saith unto them, Behold the man!
The Brokenness Behind the Crown of Thorns
So, as the above verse now states, Jesus stood on the platform after a cruel scourging. And as He stood, He wore a crown of thorns embedded into His skull, along with a purple-dyed robe.
Furthermore, the verse offers quite a few surprises to those willing to dig deeper. I looked at the HELPS Word Studies on the Greek word used for “purple” in this verse. The Greek word used for “purple,” transliterates as “porphurous.”
The interesting part of this word study is the conclusion that porphurous is a word describing a purple-reddish dye or cloth. So, this purple cloth was a mix between purple and red. And in the culture of that time, purple symbolized royalty. Whereas, red represents His sacrifice, His blood shed for you.
Even more, I believe God is communicating to us a message through this scripture. The message is that He let himself become physically BROKEN for you and for me. And to further emphasize His brokenness, I must call to remembrance a verse from the Old Testament of the Bible.
Numbers 4:13 World English Bible (WEB)
13 “They shall take away the ashes from the altar, and spread a purple cloth on it.
In the time of the Old Testament, the priests were responsible for taking away the ashes from the altar after a burnt offering. Then, they’d spread a purple cloth over the altar. God instructed more steps as to how they should conduct the burnt offering. But, for the sake of this post, I am referencing only this scripture from the chapter.
Nevertheless, I believe God was instructing Israel to do this seemingly strange act to symbolize the way in which He’d come to actually atone for us, permanently, as Jesus Christ. He was symbolizing how He’d be in ashes as the burnt offering when He wore a purple robe.
His instructions would serve as a prophetical image of the future, one-time, burnt-offering sacrificed for the people who’d choose to accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour.
The Living God Among Us
And so, if you haven’t already, I urge you to accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. But, the point of this examination of the scriptures is to really carve a proper understanding of the brokenness of Jesus at the cross.
As I mentioned earlier, many of you are suffering from depression, despair, brokenness, and more. You might just even feel like you’re in ashes. And I sense a very similar vibe through the picture painted of Jesus in the scene of His crucifixion.
Jesus became physically broken. He was in ashes. And He died, He actually died on the cross. But, that’s not the end of the story. After three days and three nights, Jesus Christ rose again from the dead. He physically resurrected.
1 Corinthians 15:3-4 King James Version (KJV)
3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
What am I getting at, then? I’m getting at the vivid picture of His resurrecting power! You may feel dead and in ashes, but, there’s always a chance to rise. I am declaring to you that there is life in the Christ.
You may have an excuse to despair or to sulk in depression, maybe it’s some kind of terrible experience or it could even be as petty as a mood swing. But, that’s why the cross is about dying to one’s self. And by dying to one’s self, I mean to put an end to the beliefs or mindsets which ruin your life.
Put depression to death, put negativity to death, put fear to death, and put the selfish appetites or behaviours to death! Furthermore, as Christ rose again, so also you rise again. You are a new being in Christ Jesus, and not even depression can stop you from being the child of God who Jesus loves.
Romans 6:8 World English Bible (WEB)
8 But if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him;
Therefore, Jesus Christ calls the brokenhearted to Him. He does not delight in your suffering, He delights in you realizing that you are His child. And that you’ve always been His from the day He let those rusty nails pierce Him to a cross, and even before then, in eternity, when your lovely image pierced the tender heart of His imagination.