33 When they came to the place called The Skull, there they crucified Him and the criminals, one on the right and the other on the left.
34 But Jesus was saying, “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing.” And they cast lots, dividing up His garments among themselves.
35 And the people stood by, looking on. And even the rulers were sneering at Him, saying, “He saved others; let Him save Himself if this is the Christ of God, His Chosen One.”
36 The soldiers also mocked Him, coming up to Him, offering Him sour wine,
37 and saying, “If You are the King of the Jews, save Yourself!”
38 Now there was also an inscription above Him, “THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS.”
39 One of the criminals who were hanged there was hurling abuse at Him, saying, “Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us!”
40 But the other answered, and rebuking him said, “Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation?
41 And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.”
42 And he was saying, “Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!”
43 And He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.”
44 It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness fell over the whole land until the ninth hour,
45 because the sun was obscured; and the veil of the temple was torn in two.
46 And Jesus, crying out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit.” Having said this, He breathed His last.
47 Now when the centurion saw what had happened, he began praising God, saying, “Certainly this man was innocent.”
48 And all the crowds who came together for this spectacle, when they observed what had happened, began to return, beating their breasts.
49 And all His acquaintances and the women who accompanied Him from Galilee were standing at a distance, seeing these things.
With Easter approaching, what better passage to focus on today?
Jesus was crucified for you.
We serve a God of loving sacrifice. We serve a God who promises paradise. He is a God who readily offers forgiveness and acceptance. A God who knows what it feels like to suffer, who is steadfast, and who loves you more than you can ever imagine.
If you have ever doubted His love for you, look to the cross. If you have ever doubted the lengths He would go to for you, look to the cross. If you have ever wondered if He truly cares for you, look to the cross. If you have questioned your purpose, look to the cross.
Like the centurion, when we see—really see—the cross, we can’t help but praise God for His goodness and undeserving, unending love for us!
• What must it have been like on this day for the people standing around witnessing Jesus on the cross? Who do you need to share the message of the cross with?
• Do you cling to the significance of the cross? How does the cross impact your daily life?
• Thank God for the cross. Thank Him for Jesus.