...but standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son!” Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home. (John 19:25-27)
Throughout our lenten series “Behold the Man”, we have been focusing on the true humanity of Jesus. That is, we have focused on how God has become incarnate for us, seeing along the way that we have much in common with our Lord - that He is our Brother. Jesus hungered, Jesus prayed, Jesus was hurt and wounded, Jesus bled. Now we come to a fascinating passage in John’s Gospel that makes us step back once more and contemplate who this Jesus really is for He, like us, has a mother.
Jesus is a God with a Mother. A human mother. Jesus, God made man, was born of a woman. Thus Mary has come to be called the Theotokos, that is, the “God-bearer”. Said another way, Mary is the Mother of God.
Many in the past have said that this confession really has nothing to do with Mary, but everything to do with Jesus and who He is. Even in those initial stages of pregnancy, as Jesus is being formed in Mary’s womb, He is divine. As a newborn, as a toddler, even as a adolescent, Jesus is God.
And yes, even as Jesus hangs dying, as He makes provision for His mother and her care in John’s home, Jesus isn’t just a concerned Son. He is a God with a Mother. A Mother whom He loves. A Mother for whose sins He dies, just as He has died for our sins, too.