LHM Lenten Devotion – March 8, 2014 “Sharper than a Knife”

 

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Lenten Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

By Reverend Wayne Palmer

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“Sharper than a Knife”

March 8, 2014


Lenten devo cover 2014Read Matthew 27:38-45TEXT: And those who passed by derided Him, wagging their heads and saying, “You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save Yourself!” (See Matthew 27:39-40)

The physical pain Jesus endures from crucifixion is unimaginable and surely compounded by the scorn and ridicule hurled at Him from all sides. Out of boundless love for these people He left His throne in heaven and became human. In deep compassion He takes their place suffering the Father’s wrath to forgive their sins. He sacrifices Himself in love, but His own people heap abuse and shame on Him.

Crowds of Jews are streaming into the city to celebrate the Passover. They pass by the cross, shaking their heads and expressing contempt for Him. The Jewish religious leaders who condemned Him throw away any trace of honor and decorum and stand opposite Him, mocking His Name, Jesus, which means “The Lord saves.” They exclaim, “He saved others; He cannot save Himself.” Even the two criminals lash out at Him in their pain and misery.

As a child I used a popular rhyme to protect myself from bullies, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me.” But their words, laughter and ridicule cut deeper than any knife. Their laughter and ridicule twisted that knife all the more.

The more you love someone and care about them, the more it hurts when they rise up against you. The sting is greater when you are sacrificing yourself for someone who mocks and ridicules you for it. That is the emotional pain Jesus endures on the cross as He pays the ultimate price for your sins and mine.

THE PRAYER: Jesus Christ, my Savior and Lord, You sought pardon and forgiveness for those who nailed You to the cross and heaped scorn and ridicule on You. Forgive our sins and fill our hearts with faith and gratitude to You, and sincere love for one another. Amen.

Easter Book 2014

 

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