The Man who Looks Like Garbage

Filthy he walks under the weight of a pile of trash,

Filthily they look on as his steps disgust the streets,

Filthy is the stench of his trash.

Filth gets him condemned,

To God, a divine disgrace he’s declared.

The man who looks like garbage


Into the abyss there he goes,

Where would that mountain of filth go except with him to damnation?

Where would the man take the garbage except into utter oblivion?

Darkness swallows him

Down he goes like a man without friends

Down he goes like a man without Father,

No one to plead his case, he is a man rejected.

Down goes the man carrying a bag full of garbage,

He even looks like garbage.


It’s not enough that he looks filthy,

The darkness also sucks him up.

Like a liquid racing through a pipe

He put up not a fight.

Like a lamb led to the slaughterhouse,

He graciously walks ahead in disgrace.

Down goes the man who looks like garbage.


Your sinning, your hatred, your lying, your dehumanising,

Where are they?

Your addictions, your idolatry, your adultery,

Where are they?

Where is your garbage, child of Adam?

You look clean, washed, free, and forgiven,

Where did your garbage go?

Is it because of him?

That man who looks like garbage?


Your garment is new, with sparkles like perfection.

You are restful, did your burdens fade away?

You seem free, who paid your debtors?

Is it that man who looks like garbage?

Was that your garbage he couldn’t let go?

Did you trade your garbage for his garment,

Your sinfulness for his sinlessness,

So that your debt could be paid in full?

Did he do all that?

If he did, he is more than a Man.

The man who looks like garbage.


“…God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation… God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”—2 Corinthians 5:19, 21.

About the author


Nuwamanya Mategyero is a Ugandan Christian blogger, teacher, and thinker. He also formerly served as an Anglican youth minister. Mategyero's mission is to bring that liberating Gospel of Jesus Christ to Africa in a way that is conscious of the history, and aspirations of the African people as a writer, social critic, and theologian. He is currently a Master of Divinity student at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary.


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By Mategyero
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