13 Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.
14 Do everything in love.
13 Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.
14 Do everything in love.
Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in.
Who is this King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle.
Lift up your heads, O ye gates; even lift them up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in.
Who is this King of glory? The Lord of hosts, he is the King of glory. Selah.
Now Jesus was going up to Jerusalem. On the way, he took the Twelve aside and said to them, “We are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and the teachers of the law. They will condemn Him to death and will hand Him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified. On the third day He will be raised to life!” Matthew 20:17-19
Blessings today! It is Wisdom Wednesday! I pray that the following Scriptures and quotes will us to keep Jesus and His amazing love, grace, and mercy in our hearts and minds… and devote our lives to the praise of His glory! Please leave a comment if inspired by the Lord! Jesus replied, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. Anyone who loves their life will lose it, while anyone who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life. John 12:23-25As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed. “Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.’ ” Mark 16:5-7Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in Me, even if he dies, will live. Everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die—ever. Do you believe this?” “Yes, Lord,” she told Him, “I believe You are the Messiah, the Son of God, who comes into the world.” John 11:25-27With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all… Acts 4:33We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. Romans 6:9
Jesus said to her, “Mary.”She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means “Teacher”). Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’ ” Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: “I have seen the Lord!” And she told them that he had said these things to her. John 20:16-18“For as by a man came death, by a man has come the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so in Christ shall all be made alive.” 1 Corinthians 15:21-22“For if we have been united with Him in a death like His, we shall certainly be united with Him in a resurrection like His.” Romans 6:5
“If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart
that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” Romans 10:9
And when the centurion, who stood there in front of Jesus,
saw how He died, he said, “Surely this man was the Son of God!” Mark 15:39
Our Lord was on the cross for six long hours, all the while being faithful to his assignment to seek and save the lost. Even as He gives up His spirit, we see man drawn to Him, conviction of sin, and belief confessed that He was the Son of God!
Jesus had stated that this would happen:
27 “Now is my soul troubled. And what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But for this purpose I have come to this hour. 28 Father, glorify your name.” Then a voice came from heaven: “I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.” 29 The crowd that stood there and heard it said that it had thundered. Others said, “An angel has spoken to him.” 30 Jesus answered, “This voice has come for your sake, not mine. 31 Now is the judgment of this world; now will the ruler of this world be cast out. 32 And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” 33 He said this to show by what kind of death he was going to die. John 12:27-33
As we look at the at the centurion, we have the confirmation that Jesus, even on the cross, is drawing to the world, the ‘whosoever will,’ not just the Jew. I am reminded of Paul’s description of the Jew’s blessing and heritage, “the people of Israel. Theirs is the adoption to sonship; theirs the divine glory, the covenants, the receiving of the law, the temple worship and the promises. 5 Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of the Messiah, who is God over all, forever praised! Amen (Romans 9:4-5).
The centurion of the Roman army knows nothing about any of this blessing. Nor, did he see even one of the many miracles, signs, and wonders that Jesus performed. At least, I would think not. 🙂 The very fact that he is a Roman centurion lets us know that he lives in a world of many ‘g’ods with altars, and temples of all types.
He just knows that he is a man of authority assigned to watch over and the prisoners and execute the crucifixions on this day. Most likely, it is not the first day he and his men had done this. He has seen many men die, it is nothing new to him…but there is something different going on here, today. Something different about this man. The centurion has seen and heard much this day!
Was there ever a man like this man?!? Luke 23:47 gives us further insight, “The centurion, seeing what had happened, praised God and said, “Surely this was a righteous man.”” Certainly, this statement reveals the power of Jesus’ Words to draw to Himself lifted on a cross. This is critical because Jesus also told us that “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him (Luke 23:47a).” Blessed is the Lamb of God who was drawing on this day and continues to draw men unto Himself!
The power of a cross with the Son of Man nailed to it draws man to the Son of God! Hallelujah! O What a Savior! All by the grace of God!
Recognizing Jesus as a righteous man helps us to know that apart from Jesus man is not righteous, convict us of our sins, and inform us of our need for a Savior. Man apart from God described by God in His Word:
For we have already charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under sin, 10 as it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one;
11 no one understands; no one seeks for God.
12 All have turned aside; together they have become worthless;
no one does good, not even one.”
13 “Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive.”
“The venom of asps is under their lips.”
14 “Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.”
15 “Their feet are swift to shed blood; 16 in their paths are ruin and misery,
17 and the way of peace they have not known.”
18 “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”
But God so loves the world that He draws us to His Son lifted on a cross as He draws unto Himself…and man must make His choice. “”But what about you?” He asked. “Who do you say I am? (Mark 8:29a)”
And when the centurion, who stood there in front of Jesus, saw how He died,
he said, “Surely this man was the Son of God!” Mark 15:39
Blinders off, the eye of the heart opened, and Truth received. “SURELY this man was the Son of God.”
As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. 4 But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages He might show the incomparable riches of His grace, expressed in His kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. Ephesians 2:1-8
But what does it say? “The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,” that is, the message concerning faith that we proclaim: 9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. 11 As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.” 12 For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13 for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 8:8-13
Therefore I will give Him a portion among the great,
and He will divide the spoils with the strong,
because He poured out His life unto death,
and was numbered with the transgressors.
For He bore the sin of many,
and made intercession for the transgressors. Isaiah 53:12
Yesterday’s post was entitled, “The thief on a cross…” but we know that it was not one thief but two – “There they crucified Him, and with Him two others—one on each side and Jesus in the middle (John 19:18).”
We also know that both men were guilty of transgressing the Roman government for Isaiah 53:12 (above) declares that Jesus was numbered with the transgressors. This is truth because it is a statement from God. These men transgressed the law.
We also know that the guilt of the transgressors was completely opposite, so unlike, Jesus for He never transgressed anyone, the law, or God. In fact, He is God. God on a cross. He is absolutely Holy, Righteous, Pure, Perfect, Sinless. This Great and Awesome God so desired to identify with man that He has come to rescue him and He willingly bears the shame of hanging among the transgressors.
Both men were robbers and both joined the others in heaping insults on Jesus. One would think that they would so concerned about their own condition that they would not be caught up in the crucifixion of Jesus. Perhaps they thought they would gain some type favor with the Romans by taking part. We don’t know.
We are not told the specific nature of the crimes these men committed but it must have been far greater than petty since they are hanging on a cross.
38 Then two robbers were crucified with Him, one on the right and another on the left. 39 And those who passed by blasphemed Him, wagging their heads 40 and saying, “You who destroy the temple and build it in three days, save Yourself! If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross.” 41 Likewise the chief priests also, mocking with the scribes and elders, said, 42 “He saved others; Himself He cannot save. If He is the King of Israel, let Him now come down from the cross, and we will believe Him. 43 He trusted in God; let Him deliver Him now if He will have Him; for He said, ‘I am the Son of God.’” 44 Even the robbers who were crucified with Him reviled Him with the same thing. Matthew 27
So here we are at the take-away again. The moment of the so what…what do I take from this portion of the story that will grow my relationship with this same Jesus who was willing to bear shame to identify with me and my condition as He gave His life for me? Selah!
It would be easy to quickly say that I am no thief, never stole anything from anyone. I cannot relate. But there is a need to move from the obvious to ask a more meaningful question, have I ever robbed God or am I robbing Him even now? I believe this to be an important question for all mankind is at the Cross of Calvary.
The easy one is from Malachi 3:8, “Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings.” But there are other ways of robbing God so let’s begin a list below:
Certainly there are more ways to rob God than listed above and the Scripture listing could go on and on…but I believe the Lord would have so love Him and so express our gratitude by not robbing Him of the what He endured shame, brutality, shedding of blood and life to give Him. May He strengthen us by His Spirit and Word that we would be found faithful.
We will continue with the robbers on tomorrow. Bless you today!
“Two other men, both criminals, were also led out with him to be executed. When they came to the place called the Skull, they crucified Him there, along with the criminals—one on His right, the other on His left. Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” Luke 23:32-34
It may be hard to acknowledge but most of us have prayed for justice when we believe we have been wronged. Sometimes we have been wronged and then, sometimes we were not as innocent as we believed. At the appointed time, sometimes bit by bit, our loving and gracious Father shows us that our attitudes and actions were not as pure as we thought. Perhaps we spoke too quickly, the tone of our voice was wrong, perhaps we should not have spoken or acted at all, perhaps the words were right but our body action spoke louder…perhaps, perhaps, perhaps.
If we allow the Word and the Holy Spirit to do their perfect work, sooner or later, the Lord convicts us and reveals that we are not quite as innocent as our hearts and minds believe. It helps us to understand Romans 3:23, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God“...yes, even me.
As we look at Luke 23:32-34, we find that there is One who walked the earth and can take exception to the above, His Name is Jesus. The Son of God and the Son of man who lived on this earth and never sinned.
The Gospel accounts allow us to see Jesus in the midst of man’s worst action and attitude. If anyone could have prayed to the Father for justice, it is Him. Jesus, the Perfect and Holy Lamb of God could have called out, ‘Father, make them pay for this.” He could have called out and asked the Father to strike each one present down. Jesus could have called out and requested the Father to prove that He and the Father are One, hold all power, and refuse to allow Him to die.
There are many things He could have prayed for to demand justice be rendered…BUT HE DID NOT. Instead, He called out for mercy! He prayed that man would not receive the justice he deserved, the due consequences of his wicked and selfish actions, death and eternal separation from the Father. Jesus in the midst of the ultimate demonstration of wickedness prayed not for justice BUT for forgiveness! SELAH!
Amazing grace, how sweet the sound that saves a wretch like me! Absolute mercy and it’s not in the sooner or later, after things settle down, after the wound begins to scab or the scab falls off… BUT after a brutal beating that caused His face to be beyond recognition and His body battered, after nails are driven through his flesh, and pain is at its peak. Jesus said He came to be about His Father’s business and not even the wickedness of man nor the influence of the enemy would stop Him. SELAH!
For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” Luke 19:10
In bringing many sons and daughters to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through what he suffered. Hebrews 2:10
And they sang a new song, saying: “You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals,
because You were slain, and with Your blood You purchased for God persons from every tribe and language and people and nation. Revelation 5:9
Blessings, honor, glory, and our lives belong to the One who purchased our salvation. I am so very thankful that Jesus’ cry was for mercy because had He cried for justice, the Father would have let Him live…and we would remain in death and God’s wrath. SELAH!
Praise God that His plan before the foundation of the world was to deliver and claim all who accept Jesus as Lord and Savior for His own!
The above verse was part of my devotions today. Yesterday’s post and the reference to six long hours is still in my heart, still stirs my spirit, still humbles me, still causes me to bow in worship. Jesus has already paid it all and He is God!
The greatest love, ever, proven at Calvary! So I pray for you and I pray for me…for our immediate and extended families, I pray. I pray for our churches… and for our communities, I pray. I pray for this nation and for the nations…for the unsaved to come to Jesus for salvation and for the saved to grow and be filled with ALL the fullness of God.
I kneel before the Father from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named. I pray that He may grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power in the inner man through His Spirit, and that the Messiah may dwell in your hearts through faith. I pray that you, being rooted and firmly established in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the length and width, height and depth of God’s love, and to know the Messiah’s love that surpasses knowledge, so you may be filled with all the fullness of God (Ephesians 3:15-19). In Jesus Name and for His glory, Amen!
There is a way that seems right to a man,
but its end is the way to death. Proverbs 14:12
Many in today’s world believe that there are many roads to eternal life. The following statement from a Pew Report in 2008 follows: “A majority of all American Christians (52%) think that at least some non-Christian faiths can lead to eternal life. Indeed, among Christians who believe many religions can lead to eternal life, 80% name at least one non-Christian faith that can do so. These are among the key findings of a national survey conducted by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life from July 31-Aug. 10, 2008, among 2,905 adults.” Just a few words to ponder:
“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6 ESV
“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
“The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.” John 1:29
“But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5
“Then one of the elders said to me, “Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.” Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing at the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. The Lamb had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth.”
When John was given a vision of heaven, he wept because he thought no one was qualified to open the scroll, the title deed, to the earth. One of the elders encouraged John not to cry that there was One who qualified. This One had two Messianic names, the Lion of the tribe of Judah and the Root of David. This One had triumphed and is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.
John then tells us that He saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain…a Lamb slain!
If your way to eternal life does not include the Cross of Calvary and a Lamb who shed His blood and was slain…who placed man’s sin on himself, overcame sin, death, the grave and resurrected, please consider these Words from Jesus as well: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly (John 10:10).”
“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son,
that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:18
32 As they went out, they found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name. They compelled this man to carry his cross. 33 And when they came to a place called Golgotha (which means Place of a Skull), 34 they offered him wine to drink, mixed with gall, but when he tasted it, he would not drink it. 35 And when they had crucified him, they divided his garments among them by casting lots. 36 Then they sat down and kept watch over him there. 37 And over his head they put the charge against him, which read, “This is Jesus, the King of the Jews.” 38 Then two robbers were crucified with him, one on the right and one on the left. 39 And those who passed by derided him, wagging their heads 40 and saying, “You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself! If you are the Son of God, come down from the cross.” 41 So also the chief priests, with the scribes and elders, mocked him, saying, 42 “He saved others; he cannot save himself. He is the King of Israel; let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him. 43 He trusts in God; let God deliver him now, if he desires him. For he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’” 44 And the robbers who were crucified with him also reviled him in the same way.
45 Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land until the ninth hour. 46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” 47 And some of the bystanders, hearing it, said, “This man is calling Elijah.” 48 And one of them at once ran and took a sponge, filled it with sour wine, and put it on a reed and gave it to him to drink. 49 But the others said, “Wait, let us see whether Elijah will come to save him.” 50 And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and yielded up his spirit.
51 And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split. 52 The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, 53 and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many. 54 When the centurion and those who were with him, keeping watch over Jesus, saw the earthquake and what took place, they were filled with awe and said, “Truly this was the Son of God!”
55 There were also many women there, looking on from a distance, who had followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering to him, 56 among whom were Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James and Joseph and the mother of the sons of Zebedee.
Were You There
Were you there when they crucified my Lord?
Were you there when they crucified my Lord?
Oh, sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble.
Were you there when they crucified my Lord?
“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this:
While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
My mother-in-law would often respond in conversations and life by saying, “Yes, my Blessed Jesus.” Well, that’s what I am doing this morning. I am meditating on 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a and Romans 5:8 and responding, “Yes, my Blessed Jesus.”
God demonstrating love…surely, He has proved to man His patience, kindness, good will and pleasure, humility, honor of those He created and loves, seeking of man’s good and salvation, slowness to anger, willingness to wash our records, hatred of evil, and His heart to rejoice over us with singing…proven at the cross and confirmed by the resurrection of His Son and our Lord and Savior, Jesus the Christ!
Sssssoooo this morning, I am bowing at His feet, wiping His feet with my tears as I say, “Yes, my Blessed Jesus! I love you with all my heart, all my soul, all my mind and all my strength. I adore you! All glory to Your Holy Name!”
I hear His voice saying, now you demonstrate my love by walking in the Spirit and allowing the verse to be true of you as a display of My glory! Again, my response is : Yes, my Blessed Jesus! Thank You for Jesus and His Spirit living in me to empower, enable and teach me. Thank you that He lives in me, both to will and to work for Your good pleasure (Philippians 2:13). Strength me in Your Word and Spirit to fight the good fight of faith that it would be true that:
Pat is patient, Pat is kind. Pat does not envy, Pat does not boast, Pat is not proud. Pat does not dishonor others, Pat is not self-seeking, Pat is not easily angered, Pat keeps no record of wrongs. Pat does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. Pat always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres by Your Spirit and in Your Word. Thank you that Your Great and Enduring love never fails. Do it all for Your Name and Glory, In the Awesome and Blessed Name of Jesus, Amen.