Let us, then, go to Him outside the camp, bearing the disgrace He bore. Hebrews 13:13
Here is just a part of the disgrace Jesus bore outside the camp:
He was crucified as a common criminal.
He was mocked, flogged and spit upon by the Roman soldiers.
He had no place to be buried until His body was claimed
The soldiers cast lots for His only possession: his robe.
He was ridiculed by the people.
He was powerless in His death.
He carried His own cross through the city before a jeering crowd. “Save yourself, Jesus! Where are your angels now, Jesus?”
(This part you couldn’t see except that it killed Him:) He became sin.
He was forsaken by His friends and followers.
He was forsaken by His Father.
He had all the look of a total loser.
If we join Him out there, what part of this do we bear with Him? Just about all of it except for being forsaken by our Father. Thank God that’s not going to happen to us. But everything else we will experience, or at least understand.
Okay, everyone, pay attention here, because I don’t think you are getting this. I’m shaking the tree, but I’m not hearing back from anyone. Is this old news to you? Am I the late-comer? This message the last few days is earthshaking. It should shake the tree to its roots so that all the fake fruit falls to the ground, and perhaps then, stripped naked, we can begin to share in the disgrace of Christ. Have I gone off the rails here? I think the whole Christian enterprise in this country went off the rails years ago.
Christians — and I apologize to our global audience for this next assessment because I can only speak for America here — Christians in this country are way too good, way too righteous, way too “right” (as opposed to “wrong”), way too comfortable, way too successful, way too powerful, way too influential, way too wealthy, way too dominant to share in the disgrace of Jesus. I don’t know where we went, but we didn’t go outside the camp. There’s no sense of disgrace in the Christianity that’s being marketed in the world right now; there is money, influence, political power, success, retribution, revenge, and on it goes.
What happens when you meet Christ outside the camp? You come face to face with your own ugly sin, pious self-righteousness, hypocrisy, bigotry, weakness, selfishness, narcissism, dysfunction, and what have you. And this is never a one-time thing. We carry this disgrace with us because we still live in a body of death. And we carry it because it reminds us of our only hope. And this is the most important part: embracing our disgrace only qualifies us for His grace, and so disgrace requires grace, and ultimately grace turned outward, as we can’t wait to give it away.