Did you ever notice when Jesus forgave those who were responsible for His death?
It was in the midst of His suffering.
Luke 23:34 KJV — Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.
This truth struck me this morning as I was praying.
Jesus is the believer’s example in all things and that includes forgiveness.
Thus, we should be quick to forgive, even in the midst of the pain, right in the middle of the wrong, we need to forgive.
What about those things which happened already?
Yes, we need to forgive those who hurt us in the past as well.
Because Christ Jesus forgave us, we must forgive others.
Acts 5:31 NKJV — “Him God has exalted to His right hand to be Prince and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your forgiveness. Thank You for Your example, that You chose to forgive, even in the middle of the most horrific abuse You were experiencing. Thank You that it doesn’t matter how much we are hurt, it matters how much You are willing and able to heal the hurt. Lord, thank You for Your incredible sacrifice. Thank You for salvation. Amen.
Matthew 26:1-2 NKJV — Now it came to pass, when Jesus had finished all these sayings, that He said to His disciples, “You know that after two days is the Passover, and the Son of Man will be delivered up to be crucified.”
There’s nothing which can really prepare someone for the death of a loved one.
But this is an even deeper shock.
The disciples had great expectations for Jesus and crucifixion wasn’t one of them.
Not to mention, that Jesus had done nothing wrong.
What would they accuse Him of?
How could an innocent man be allowed to pay the ultimate punishment?
Their minds couldn’t grapple the full truth of what was occurring.
The Gospels were written for those who came after.
So we might learn the truth as well as those who walked with Jesus.
Luke 24:15-17 NKJV — So it was, while they conversed and reasoned, that Jesus Himself drew near and went with them. But their eyes were restrained, so that they did not know Him. And He said to them, “What kind of conversation is this that you have with one another as you walk and are sad?”
Jesus, Himself, explained all that had happened to His disciples, that they might share the truth.
It was why He came.
Luke 24:25-27NKJV — Then He said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken! “Ought not the Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory?” And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.
As difficult as it is to realize that Jesus was born to die on a cross, all of scripture points to Him as the Redeemer.
It is truly wonderful that Jesus knew exactly what He was walking to and when He rose, He had made the way to salvation.
As we walk forward in this week before Easter, let us spend time meditating upon Jesus.
What He did.
Who He is.
And why He did it.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your sacrifice. Nothing I can do or experience will ever compare to Your wonderful gift of salvation. How great a blessing! What a wonderful, beautiful, priceless gift! Lord, I want to honor You and Your sacrifice. I want my life to reflect Your love and truth. Please help me to live daily, carrying my cross with joy. Thank You for Your promises. Thank You for Your love. I love You. Amen.
“Amazing Grace! how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like Me!”
John Newton’s hymn is timeless.
Although there are many hymns and songs which articulate the same truths this one does, it will always be a favorite.
The first line vibrates with such meaning.
For a sinner, covered in the stains of disobedience, the sound of Jesus’voice granting both cleansing and rebirth is the sweetest melody.
“I once was lost, but now am found, Was blind, but now I see.”
The truth of being lost in utter darkness is a terrifying place to be, but oh how joyous to have Christ throw open the heavy disgusting prison door of wickedness and separation from God, to allow the truth of His sacrifice to bring such as myself into the glory and healing of life in the Son.
“‘Twas grace that taught my heart to fear, And grace my fears relieved; How previous did that grace appear The hour I first believed!”
When one sees clearly, the enormous gap between the sinner and God Almighty seems an unreachable divide.
Then the cross becomes a door, a gift of grace to all who chose to enter, and upon opening the door of belief in Jesus each one finds even more grace through the abundant love of Christ Jesus.
“Through many dangers, toils and snares, I have already come; ‘Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far, And grace will lead me home.”
Once the sinner turned saint steps into the journey of life in Christ Jesus they find a friend Who walks with them through every trial and trouble.
They are sojourners on their way through this world toward life eternal with Christ in heaven.
“When we’ve been there ten thousand years, Bright shining as the sun, We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise Than when we first begun. Amen”
Our time oriented minds can not truly fathom eternity.
But to spend a little imagination, we might think, we might well picture what praise, worship, and prayer at the foot of God’s throne could be like.
To be utterly free from sin, wickedness, evil, death, fear, anxiety, trouble, hunger, grief, pain,…
I can easily see why we would spend ten thousand years worshipping and be content to continue on and on.
Revelation 4:8 NKJV — The four living creatures, each having six wings, were full of eyes around and within. And they do not rest day or night, saying: “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come!”
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You so much for being holy. Thank You for salvation and Your amazing grace. Lord, thank You for giving us so much, for we do not deserve any of it. Lord Jesus, please help those who have yet to know You to see You and recognize Your salvation. Lord, please soften hearts and open their eyes to Your truth. Lord, for those who are called by Your name, please help each one of us to remain humble, aware of Your incredible grace each and every day. Let us never take advantage of the glorious gift You have given, but instead strengthen us to remain vigilant, wise servants who watch and wait for the return of their Master. I love You, Jesus. I praise Your holy name! Amen.