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Lenten Devotions: Painkiller

by | Apr 6, 2023 | Comfort, Lenten Devotions, Suffering

And when they came to a place called Golgotha (which means Place of a Skull), they offered Him wine to drink, mixed with gall, but when He tasted it, He would not drink it.”

(Matthew 27:33-34 ESV)

Jesus refused to drink the painkiller they offered Him just before they hammered in the nails. I doubt the wine and gall mixture was very effective; still, He turned it down.

Why? I’m not sure. Some people think He wanted to keep a clear head for the rest of the time remaining to Him. That makes sense to me.

Because Jesus Himself wasn’t yet finished with His own work of killing other people’s pain. There was His mother standing right there in her grief, and His disciple John, too. There were the two men dying on either side of Him. All of these were in pain and needed something from Jesus. He had things to say and do before His final breath.

And so He did them—gave Mary into John’s care, so they could comfort one another; listened patiently to the ranting of the two dying robbers; and promised paradise to the one who changed his mind and asked Jesus to remember him in His kingdom. He was still Jesus—still killing pain and bringing new life, even as He hung there dying.

And now that He has risen from the dead, He’s still doing it—still reaching out to us in our pain, still strengthening and comforting us, making sure we don’t go through it alone. And to anyone who will trust in Him He gives life, forgiveness, and peace.

We Pray: Thank You, Lord, for helping me when I am in pain. Amen.

Reflection Questions:
* When is the last time you felt pain?
* Which do you think is worse, physical or emotional pain? Why?
* Tell about a time when God cared for you through something painful.

Lenten Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo.
Originally published in The Lutheran Hour on April 1, 2023
Used by permission from International Lutheran Laymen’s League, all rights


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