Saturday, September 24, 2016

Luke 23:39-43

Luke 23:39-43
And one of the ones who was being suspended on the cross because of doing evil was blaspheming Him, saying, “Are you not the Christ?  Save yourself and us.”  And answering, the other said, rebuking him, “Are you not afraid of God, since you are in the same judgment?”  In our case we received justly for it is worthy of what we did.  But in His case this one did nothing out of place.”  And he was saying to Jesus, “Be reminded of me when you should come into your kingdom.”  And He said to him, “Amen, I say to you this day you will be with me in paradise.”

Thoughts for Today

First Thought:

This is a very important section of scripture for Christians.  It is in this section of scripture that we find the fundamental truth of humanity with respect to how we respond to our sinfulness.  In one case, we can embrace our sinfulness and be self-centered.  One of the criminals looks to Jesus and angrily demands that Jesus save Himself and each of the criminals.  That criminal doesn’t care about Jesus at all!  That criminal just wants to be saved himself!  Our human nature wants to be self-centered, focusing in on ourselves and our own desires and our own ambition.

When are you self-centered?  When do you encourage other people to act selfishly so that you can get a benefit of their action?

Second Thought:

We turn next to the second criminal.  This criminal understands his sinfulness and repents of it.  He acknowledges that they are getting the punishment that they deserve.  He doesn’t ask Jesus to do anything other than remember him.  This is a humble response to sin.  Acknowledge our guilt.  Remorsefully own our fallen nature.  Know that we cannot save ourselves and therefore we rely fully upon God’s forgiveness.

Where are you willing to humbly acknowledge your sinful nature?  Where are you remorseful about the sin that you have done?

Third Thought:

Jesus’ response is telling.  He doesn’t even acknowledge the demands of the self-centered one.  However, the humble one is acknowledged.  Jesus tells Him that he has found salvation on this day.  Humbleness leads to repentance; repentance leads to forgiveness.

Where are you forgiven?  How does the forgiveness that you receive influence your life?

Passage for Tomorrow: Luke 23:44-49
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