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Carry Jesus' Burden

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No one has ever had the impact that Jesus did when He was on earth as the Son of Man, and there is no person who lived 2,000 years ago about whom so much has been written and spoken.

While He was strong, He was able to express a deep sense of caring about those who suffer. He wept openly over the city of Jerusalem and about the sorrows of the people. Weeping did not detract one iota from His strength.

People from all over Judea followed Him and were captivated by the words He spoke and the wonders He performed, in spite of the fact that most did not understand Him and most had no idea who He really was.

The weight of the cross

There was one moment when Jesus—who was normally very strong—was also very weak. Yet, even Jesus always needed help from the Father, but as a man. Matthew 27:32 Matthew 27:32And as they came out, they found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name: him they compelled to bear his cross.
American King James Version×
touches briefly on the moment when a man standing in the crowd was compelled to carry Jesus’ cross.

Jesus had been badly beaten by this time; His physical strength had failed Him. This piece of timber was one burden He could no longer carry. His body was too weak.

Soldiers saw a strong man standing by (Simon of Cyrene) standing by and compelled him to carry the burden.

Doing it for Him

Jesus addressed those who would be His followers in Matthew 25:35-40 Matthew 25:35-40 35 For I was an hungered, and you gave me meat: I was thirsty, and you gave me drink: I was a stranger, and you took me in: 36 Naked, and you clothed me: I was sick, and you visited me: I was in prison, and you came to me. 37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we you an hungered, and fed you? or thirsty, and gave you drink? 38 When saw we you a stranger, and took you in? or naked, and clothed you? 39 Or when saw we you sick, or in prison, and came to you? 40 And the King shall answer and say to them, Truly I say to you, Inasmuch as you have done it to one of the least of these my brothers, you have done it to me.
American King James Version×
. He related a parable in which He complimented those who did something to or for Him. When He was hungry, thirsty, a stranger, naked, sick or in prison, He was helped, visited and encouraged.

The people He was speaking to could not comprehend what He was saying because they were unaware that these things had happened. They did not think they had done any of these things.

In verse 40 Jesus explained: “Inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.” Have we ever followed through with this thought? Can we see the greater impact of His words?

How many times have we seen someone who was loaded with sorrow? His load may not have been a heavy timber, and he may not have been whipped, but a person who has many difficulties does get discouraged and loses the will to continue. The person’s problems can become impossible burdens for him.

When a converted person sees someone in need, I would hope he or she would not have to be forced to help. I would hope each of us who is strong would be the first to reach out and help carry that heavy load.

Can we envision ourselves in the crowd when Jesus was staggering under the heavy weight?

The point is that Jesus said we are carrying His heavy load when we do this for the least of His brethren. Can we envision ourselves in the crowd when Jesus was staggering under the heavy weight? Would our hearts ache with the desire to help? Would we need to be forced, or would we gladly step forward and be of help?

Pure religion

There are many opportunities given to Jesus’ followers to carry His burden. James states that “pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world” (James 1:27 James 1:27Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.
American King James Version×

Jesus was especially tender toward the weak and needy. Each time we who are strong see someone staggering under the load life sometimes piles on people, and we reach out to be of help, we are reaching out to take the timber from the shoulders of Jesus Christ. One day He will tell us that, just as He explained to His followers.

Jesus lifted the burdens from us all by giving Himself. This example is a lesson we ought not to neglect.

God commands us to keep the Sabbath day holy (Exodus 20:8-11 Exodus 20:8-11 8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 Six days shall you labor, and do all your work: 10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD your God: in it you shall not do any work, you, nor your son, nor your daughter, your manservant, nor your maidservant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger that is within your gates: 11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: why the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.
American King James Version×
). It is a sin to engage in ordinary work or things that do not keep the day sacred. Yet Jesus stated that it was not breaking the Sabbath if one were to take the heavy burden from another (Matthew 12:9-12 Matthew 12:9-12 9 And when he was departed there, he went into their synagogue: 10 And, behold, there was a man which had his hand withered. And they asked him, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the sabbath days? that they might accuse him. 11 And he said to them, What man shall there be among you, that shall have one sheep, and if it fall into a pit on the sabbath day, will he not lay hold on it, and lift it out? 12 How much then is a man better than a sheep? Why it is lawful to do well on the sabbath days.
American King James Version×
). We are encouraged to visit the sick and to do good on the Sabbath. Naturally, God expects us to carefully consider what He allows to be classified as good. We are not to use this as an excuse to do things we prefer to do.

Jesus lifted the burdens from us all by giving Himself. This example is a lesson we ought not to neglect.

Some, however, choose to remain weak—although they could act and change their situation. Where it is possible, each person should carry his own load and become strong so that he can help others (Galatians 6:2 Galatians 6:2Bear you one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
American King James Version×

Paul encourages God’s people to do good to all men. He admonishes us not to become weary in well doing and, as we have occasion, Paul tells us to do good with special concern for “those who are of the household of faith” (Galatians 6:9-10 Galatians 6:9-10 9 And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. 10 As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good to all men, especially to them who are of the household of faith.
American King James Version×
). It is when we lift the burden of a brother that we are also lifting the burden from Jesus.

God wants His children to reap huge benefits and blessings from Him for the manner in which they conduct their lives. In Romans 8:17 Romans 8:17And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.
American King James Version×
, Paul wrote that we are children and heirs—“heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.”

Jesus carried our burdens so that we may become strong enough to carry the burdens of others. There is no greater gift than to be given eternal life and glory with Jesus Christ. Carry Jesus’ burden with a willing and glad heart—there is a great blessing that is yours for the taking.