Thursday, April 14th, 2022
Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
— Luke 23:34 (NIV) —
“Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.”
— Colossians 3:13-14 (NIV) —
Bible Reading • Luke 23:32-34
The Crucifixion of Jesus
“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.” And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.”
We read in these three verses that Jesus forgave His executioners and prayed to His Father for their absolution. Jesus looked at the men who nailed Him to the cross with compassion, with love and He spoke forgiveness to them and prayed for them. Jesus did exactly what He had been teaching throughout His ministry, love one another.
I read something recently that has had an unsettling affect on me. I read a post on Meta, formerly called Facebook by someone I follow. It troubled me so much that I actually ask others I know and respect, to read it as well. Some of my them were eager to share their thoughts, while one did not respond and another responded only with a question directed back at me. All of these responses and even the non-response one were valuable to me. At first, When I read the post I was very confused and kind of angry that someone believed a truth of mine to be a metaphor as not being true or at least not perceived true in real life. I simply felt very uneasy and kind of agitated. I have since come to the conclusion that my unsettling was in fact a conviction of my theology, a foundation stone of my Christian faith. This all came together after reading my Lenten devotional for today. It’s not an issue of right or wrong, real or metaphorical, it’s my own personal belief; and it’s important to me not to compromise it. *I’ll share the quote below.
During these last few days of Lent is it easy to fast forward over the ugliness and pain of the crucifixion and go straight to Sunday morning and the stone rolled away, singing “He Lives!” I think we need to pause, and allow ourselves to experience it all, the bad and the good. The good is Great because the bad is so Ugly. Our salvation came at a price and it deserves our attention and our grief that such a price was needed and freely given. It’s not pretty but was necessary. I have a friend who refuses to watch the movie, “The Passion of Christ” due to the violence and painful cinematography; but can you even imagine what Jesus’ mother endured. The movie is not for entertainment value, rather it is a visual display of the depths of Jesus’ love for us.
I am a firm and faithful believer in the “LOVE” of Jesus and yes it’s beautiful, calming and reassuring. Jesus’ love is life-giving in a world that is so depleted of such a needed commodity. The book I chose to read during Lent is called, “Uncovering the Love of Jesus.” and it does not gloss over the parts that are uncomfortable. Being a Christian is not for the faint of heart, we are warriors for Christ. I love a good sermon that gives me the “feels.” But I also need the tough sermons that teach truth, those Bible stories that are messy and show the glory of God working in and through lives of ordinary people.
I’ve heard it said, there’s a church out there for everyone and I believe that. It certainly explains all the different denominations, church practices and the many traditions that are utilized.
I am saying for me, the crucifixion of Jesus has to be part of the Easter story, and as much as I am not looking forward to Friday, I know Sunday is coming! Praise Be To God!
I respect your views and faith practices whether you agree or disagree with my ever grow theology. I will continue to read, study, learn and write more about the God I serve, He loves me though I am not deserving and He saved me not because I’m worth but because He loves me. And, He loves you too.
Challenge • Question
Who in your life do you need to forgive?
Pray for them today, ask God to uncover His love in your heart towards them.
✝️ • 🙏🏻 • 💟 • 🙏🏻 • ✝️
“And for your lifeblood I will surely demand an accounting. I will demand an accounting from every animal. And from each human being, too, I will demand an accounting for the life of another human being.”
Genesis 9:5 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage?search=Genesis%209:5&version=NIV
“Show no pity. You must purge from Israel the guilt of shedding innocent blood, so that it may go well with you. Show no pity: life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.”
Deuteronomy 19:13,21 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage?search=Deuteronomy%2019:13,21&version=NIV
“Cursed is anyone who kills their neighbor secretly.” Then all the people shall say, “Amen!” “Cursed is anyone who accepts a bribe to kill an innocent person.” Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”
Deuteronomy 27:24-25 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage?search=Deuteronomy%2027:24-25&version=NIV
“It is mine to avenge; I will repay. In due time their foot will slip; their day of disaster is near and their doom rushes upon them. ”
Deuteronomy 32:35 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage?search=Deuteronomy%2032:35&version=NIV
“Then the Spirit of God came on Zechariah son of Jehoiada the priest. He stood before the people and said, “This is what God says: ‘Why do you disobey the Lord’s commands? You will not prosper. Because you have forsaken the Lord , he has forsaken you.’” But they plotted against him, and by order of the king they stoned him to death in the courtyard of the Lord’s temple. King Joash did not remember the kindness Zechariah’s father Jehoiada had shown him but killed his son, who said as he lay dying, “May the Lord see this and call you to account.”
2 Chronicles 24:20-22 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage?search=2%20Chronicles%2024:20-22&version=NIV
“Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.”
Luke 6:37 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage?search=Luke%206:37&version=NIV
“Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us. And lead us not into temptation.’”
Luke 11:4 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage?search=Luke%2011:4&version=NIV
“Even if they sin against you seven times in a day and seven times come back to you saying ‘I repent,’ you must forgive them.”
Luke 17:4 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage?search=Luke%2017:4&version=NIV
The Stoning of Stephen
“When the members of the Sanhedrin heard this, they were furious and gnashed their teeth at him. But Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. “Look,” he said, “I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.” At this they covered their ears and, yelling at the top of their voices, they all rushed at him, dragged him out of the city and began to stone him. Meanwhile, the witnesses laid their coats at the feet of a young man named Saul. While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” Then he fell on his knees and cried out, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” When he had said this, he fell asleep.”
Acts 7:54-60 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage?search=Acts%207:54-60&version=NIV
Thank you for stopping by my blog today, I am blessed by your support and encouragement. ~ Peace be with you all!
~Charlotte, Seeker of unexpected Comfort, Happiness, Joy and Patience.