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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."
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
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!
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
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