By Mark Buetow
Since it was the day of Preparation, and so that the bodies would not remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath was a high day), the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken and that they might be taken away. So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who had been crucified with him. But when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. But one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water. He who saw it has borne witness—his testimony is true, and he knows that he is telling the truth—that you also may believe. For these things took place that the Scripture might be fulfilled: "Not one of his bones will be broken." And again another Scripture says, "They will look on him whom they have pierced" (John 19:31-37).
Cruciflood. No, I didn't say it wrong. I said cruciFLOOD. That's what your Baptism is. It's a cruciflood! Jesus was crucified for you. And when He died and His side was pierced a crucified flood of water and blood flowed out. Water! Into the font. Baptism. Blood! Into the cup. The Sacrament of the Altar. Water and blood. Flooding from the pierced side of crucified Jesus means a cruciflood for you. This cruciflood saves you. It washes you. It drowns your wicked Old Adam and it lifts you up in the ark of the Church. Jesus crucified for you. A cruciflood poured out for you.
You see, on the second day of creation, God made a firmament to divide the waters above from the waters below. He called the firmament "heaven" or "sky." And in the 600th year of Noah's life, the Lord's wrath against sin pierced that firmament and the windows of heaven were ripped open and the water above fell upon the earth and drowned it. Drowned the people. Drowned the plants. Drowned the animals. Everything died. Nothing left. Nothing except what the Lord saved. Noah and Mrs. Noah and Shem, Ham, and Japheth and their wives and the animals he put in the ark. The Lord saved them (Genesis 7:11-15). The Flood didn't harm them or the animals aboard the ark because the Lord saved them for the sake of His promise to send a Savior some day. And on Good Friday, Jesus, that promised savior, is lifted up on the cross, crucified between heaven and earth, and He too is pierced by the wrath of God. And killed. And the flood that comes out destroys all your sin. All of it. Nothing left. Every sin you've imagined in your thoughts. Every sin you've spoken with your mouth. Every sin you've done with your body. All sins. Every sin. Your sinful flesh. Dead. Drowned in the cruciflood that pours from Jesus' side.
And just as the waters of the Flood lifted up the ark above the drowned world, so the cruciflood from Jesus' side lifts up His Church. The ark of the Church floats upon the waters from Christ's side (1 Peter 3:18-21).The cruciflood has drowned your enemies: the devil, the world, your sinful flesh.These waters have all at once drowned your Old Adam and saved your New Man. The cruciflood of water from Jesus' side is the spring of the River of Life by which your sins are washed away and you are raised from the dead to live with Jesus forever (Revelation 22:1). And remember that when Noah got off that boat, there were animals to be sacrificed. A holy cookout in which the blood of beasts was shed and the Lord smelled the sweet aroma of the meat and fire. That's the cruciflood of Jesus' blood! With a sacrifice of the animals Noah received the gift of the flood being over (Genesis 8:20-21). And they were rejoicing not just to get out of the smelly ark where he was cooped up with his kids! They were rejoicing that God's anger was over and dried up. Just so Jesus, the Lamb sacrificed by being crucified on Calvary, is the promise that God can no longer be angry over your sin. His cruciflood of blood is given to you in the Cup of His Supper as the pledge and promise that God's anger is over. Jesus was crucified. He was pierced. The cruciflood that pours forth is your salvation. Crucified. Jesus on Calvary. Cruciflood. Jesus at the font and on the altar. And you are safe in the ark of His Church unto life everlasting.
Rev. Mark Buetow is pastor and school director of Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church in McHenry, Illinois.
This article was originally published on the Higher Things website in August 2014.
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