May 8, 2020 – Friday prior to Ester 5
– Psalm 31 – This Psalm is a prayer when confronted by a conspiracy so powerful and open that all David’s friends abandoned him. According to Luke 23:46, Jesus applied verse 5 “Father, into Your hands I commit My Spirit.” to His own circumstance. Those who share in His sufferings at the hands of all sorts of forces are encouraged to hear and use this psalm in light of what Jesus has endured for us. Notice that Jesus dismisses His own spirit.
Jesus' death is different from any other.
“The wages of sin is death” - the Bible tells us. Each man must die as a result of sin. We will face death because of our common corrupt nature - found in every person who has ever taken the breath of life. Jesus' death is different, as He never sinned.
The Bible further tells us; "It is appointed for man once to die and after this comes judgment" We will face the judgment seat of God once we die. There will be a day or reckoning for every soul upon this earth. Again, not so with Jesus. His was a perfect sacrifice. As He was innocent and yet charged and judged. Yet He bore our punishment for us - that His sentencing might be sufficient for the sin of the entire world.
Jesus' death is absolutely voluntary - no one else- including His enemies or the devil himself -can take His life from Him. The death of Jesus is a supreme sacrifice. Jesus tells us plainly, "No one takes My life from Me - I lay it down and I take it up again."
Jesus dismisses His life voluntarily. He does it of His own will. This selfless act is necessary and essential to your salvation.
It had to be voluntary for God to be just. There is an element of justice with God. An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a life for a life. Each sin must be dealt with. Total payment must be made. The debt for sin must be paid. Jesus Christ by His voluntary death paid the ultimate price for sin.
It had to be voluntary for God to be God. People can't kill God. We can ignore Him. We can defy Him. We can abandon and disown Him. But we can't kill Him. The devil thought in his heart of hearts that he had killed the Lord of life. Not so! Remember those words of Jesus, "No one takes My life from Me - I lay it down and I take it up again.” That's why Jesus could pray "Father, into Thy hands I commit My spirit."
It had to be voluntary to display fully His love. The death of Jesus was not a selfish act. It was a labor o life to demonstrate fully His love for us. Jesus says in John chapter three: "God loved the world so much that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life."
See what manner of love the Farther has for us that we might be the children of God. As the Son has given up His life for you now you are free and your sins they are no more!
Merciful Father, Your patience and loving-kindness toward us has no end. Grant that by Your Holy Spirit we may always think and do those things which are pleasing in Your sight; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
The Crucifixion copyright © Ed Riojas, Higher Things
Collect for Proper 22 Series B, Lutheran Service Book copyright © 2006 Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis