August 19, 2012

The Son Restored

Posted in Atonement, Faith, Good Friday, Holy Week, Lent, Liturgical Calendar, Redeemer, Suffering, Suffering Servant at 11:15 pm by Teresa Roberts Johnson

Desolate, the weeping mother followed
One last time her precious only boy.
When she was young her steps were lighter,
But sorrow’s weight had stolen all her joy.

When Jesus saw the sad procession,
He took compassion on her heart’s deep pain,
He bade her first to cease her weeping,
And then He raised the widow’s child of Nain.

In reuniting living son and mother,
Christ restored what death had rudely won.
This new Eve received her fallen Abel.
God ransomed piteous slave with His own Son.

Soon tears would fall from blessed mother Mary
Watching her Son in anguish on the cross
Bearing the mortal wounds deserved by sinners,
He joyfully redeemed mankind from utter loss.

Copyright © 2012, 2021 by Teresa Roberts Johnson (All rights reserved)


The very worst part of the entrance of sin into the world is not just that we individually were tarnished by sin, but that all our relationships are ruined by its curse. Even when we are redeemed, when we live and love and walk in the light of Christ, we will most certainly face the death of loved ones. So when Jesus broke into the sorrow of this world and proved by healing the sick and raising the dead that the curse could be rolled back, He fulfilled the hope that had been building up since Adam and Eve were called out of hiding and back into the grace of God.

The very short passage in Luke 7 that tells the story of the widow and son of Nain has some notable details that are emphasized in the poem. First, he meets the funeral procession on their way out of the city. This was the idea that drew me most into the story tonight, because as the last verse relates, this situation mirrors the one at Calvary. Second, as soon as He saw her, Jesus told her to stop weeping. In other words, He asked her to have faith in Him, for His promise of blessings is surety of that they will be delivered. Third, the situation with a mother losing a son is close to my heart, and I cannot help but relate all such instances back to Eve and Abel. How deeply she must have felt the pain of losing her dear son (actually both her sons), for she knew for a fact that it was her sin that caused his pain! The same is true with the mother of our Lord.


Although there are echoes of these ideas in other poems, this one was written fresh tonight (original post date).


Note from 30 January 2021: Today is the thirteenth anniversary of my son James’ death. I am preparing to teach a class in which I reference this passage, so I decided to revisit this poem. I expanded the lines to pack more ideas into this. I am struck with the passage from Tolkein’s Return of the King about all sad things coming untrue. Only in Jesus is that possible.

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  1. […] Teresa Roberts Johnson:  The Son Restored […]

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