Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Let Him Save Himself

Today's Reading: 
Exodus 39:1-40:38
Luke 23:13-43
Psalm 28:1-9
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Focus Verses: Luke 23:33-35
33 When they came to the place called the Skull, there they crucified him, along with the criminals—one on his right, the other on his left. 34 Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing." And they divided up his clothes by casting lots. 35 The people stood watching, and the rulers even sneered at him. They said, "He saved others; let him save himself if he is the Christ of God, the Chosen One."

The people who sneered and mocked Jesus with the words, "He saved others, let him save himself," were inadvertently stating the fact of the situation. Ironically, their taunts were true. It's true that Jesus could not save us if he saved himself from the pain of the cross. The incarnation of Jesus and his death on the cross are necessary for my salvation. Jesus freely chose to save humankind rather than saving himself.

Response and Action:
My salvation and life are the reason for Christ's incarnation and his death at the hands of sinful men. Jesus was without sin, yet was willing to enter a sinful world and suffer the violence of sinners. That is why God has given him all the life needed to reverse the injustices and crimes of humanity. He is the only human without sin, the only one worthy to receive life, and therefore the only one able to graciously give new life to the rest of humanity. I will put my hope and faith and confidence in him. I am a sinner, saved by grace—a grace made possible by Jesus!

Thank you, Jesus, for enduring the shame and suffering of the cross. You freely laid down your life in order to save mine. Help me, now, to hold fast to this great gift to me. Help me to lay down my life in surrender to you. Help me to live out surrender to you in all my choices and actions today. Amen.

Spiritual Formation Verses: Hebrews 2:14-15 
14 Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil— 15 and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.

The Nature of the Atonement: Four Views
by Thomas R. Schreiner

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