LHM Lenten Devotion – April 3, 2014 “Counting Bones”


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Lenten Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

By Reverend Wayne Palmer

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“Counting Bones”

April 3, 2014

Lenten devo cover 2014Read Psalm 6. TEXT: I can count all my bones — they stare and gloat over me (Psalm 22:17).

One of the most painful aspects of crucifixion was having your entire weight hanging from your hands. Your whole body was stretched by the weight, which shot intense pain through every joint, muscle and bone. The stretching also caused the bones to stand out, which is why Jesus is able to count all of them.

As David couples together Jesus’ ability to see and count all His bones, with His enemies staring and gloating over Him we are reminded that crucified criminals were hung naked. This removal of clothing served the purpose of making crucifixion as great a deterrent as possible by adding the shame of public nudity to the excruciating pain. In Jesus’ case, His enemies look on Him in hatred, and take great pleasure in seeing His protruding bones and watching Him writhe in agony.

What incredible love our Savior shows! He well might pray for His Father to strike down such evildoers who take pleasure in seeing their Lord and Christ suffering. Instead, He prays “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” Even though to forgive them, He is taking their punishment upon Himself.

That also brings us back to the prayer that echoes over and over again throughout this psalm: “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me.” Repeatedly, Jesus points out His enemies’ cruelty and savagery, their shameless mockery, ridicule and torment. He asks His Father how long He will continue to forsake Him, and pour out upon Him such wrath and fury.

THE PRAYER: Lord Jesus Christ, Your love and grace is impossible to measure. You endured such scorn and agony out of love for the whole human race. Help me share that love with everyone I meet. Amen.


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