I’m a criminal.
I deserve to die. I’m getting what I deserve with this cruel, painful death.
And yet this man beside me…
∗ He’s no criminal!
∗ I heard Him say, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
Who is this “Father” He’s talking to? I don’t see anyone in the crowd that he’s beseeching…
And then the others, those gawking at our agony, those self-righteously judging us, those who by their very consent are agreeing to our guilt…
∗ Aren’t some of them the religious rulers of this land?
∗ Is this what their religiosity looks like?
∗ Why do they taunt this man? Why do they seem to hate Him so?
Why do they say among themselves, “He saved others; let Him save Himself if He is the Christ of God, the Chosen One”?
∗ What are they talking about?
∗ What do they mean that “He saved others”?
∗ What do we – what do I – need saving from??
And this claim to being the Christ of God, the Chosen One… why would that doom this man to death, this excruciating death? He
hasn’t done anything that deserves death – not like me.
Even the soldiers are calling Him “King of the Jews.”
∗ And yet they mock Him with that title.
∗ There’s no respect in their insults. If He indeed is a King, He surely doesn’t look like one as He hangs bleeding, disfigured here beside me.
And what does it mean that He is “King of the Jews”?
∗ If He is a King, why on earth is He being killed? What crime did He commit?
∗ He’s getting what He doesn’t deserve – I’m getting what I do deserve.
This makes no sense.
If there truly is a God….
If this man is the Messiah, the Chosen One…
Then it hardly seems fair…
I’m about to die, just like He is.
I can’t do anything now to erase, to change my past.
I can’t do anything good, as I hang here in agony, to try to win His favor…
If He is who He says He is, is it enough to simply ask Him…
to ask Him to remember me when He comes into His Kingdom?
I’m not even sure what that means, but it evidently is important enough that He willingly – yes, willingly – is going to die for it.
Jesus, remember me.
“I tell you the truth, today you will be with Me in paradise.”Luke 23: 43
May the reality of what the robber on the cross experienced become true for you as well.