Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Hebrews 12:2

Reading: Isaiah 53: 4

We’re going to end this month’s devotions, all of which were based on the first part of the Cornerstone, the humanity of Christ, with an in-depth look at one of the primary reasons why Jesus HAD to be a human being. 

Shame. The terrible problem us human beings have with shame. 

Today’s main reading tells us that Jesus didn’t just endure the pain of the cross - he actually despised the shame of itHe despised the shame of it. Have you ever considered before that there was tremendous shame for Jesus associated with the cross? 

Let’s look at the word translated in English as “shame” in the original Greek language so that we can better understand exactly how Jesus felt when he was physically hanging on that cross.

The word “shame” is the Greek word aischune, which describes something that is baseuglyrevolting and grotesque. By using this word, the writer of Hebrews was telling us that Jesus’ experience on the Cross as he hung naked and broken in full view of the world was disgracefuldeplorabledespicableand reprehensible. 

Paintings and sculptures of the crucifixion always portray Jesus with a towel wrapped around his waist, but this was simply not the case. Romans were not so kind as to cover the male anatomy — Jesus was stripped of all clothing and hung naked before the jeering crowd. For a Jew who respected the human body as something made in the holy image of God and who abhorred the naked idols of paganism, this indignity was utterly humiliating and embarrassing.

Imagine if you were beaten to a pulp and then hung physically naked in front of your friends, family, co-workers and acquaintances. How would you feel? According to the Greek word aischune used in Hebrews 12:2, the Lord Jesus felt a deep sense of “shame” and “embarrassment” in that horrific moment.

Spend a few moments thinking about those hours for Jesus. Not just excruciating physical pain, but also intense spiritual forlornness and deep humiliation. 


Lord, I’m so sorry for what you went through on that cross. 

For the family

For the next few days you’ll be discussing the whole issue of shame, humiliation and so on with the family. Begin by watching this cartoon video together

Dealing with embarrassment