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Lenten Devotions: Words of Anger, Words of Truth

by | Apr 11, 2023 | God's Love, Lenten Devotions, Salvation

“And those who passed by derided Him … So also the chief priests, with the scribes and elders, mocked Him, saying, ‘He saved others; He cannot save Himself. He is the King of Israel; let Him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in Him. He trusts in God; let God deliver Him now, if He desires Him. For He said, “I am the Son of God.”’” (Matthew 27:39a, 41-43 ESV)

It takes something special—something horrible—to make fun of a dying man. Jesus had done no harm to any of them, and wasn’t likely to do any in the future. A man nailed up on a cross is surely the most harmless of men.

It would have made far more sense for the angry words to be going the opposite direction.

But that’s not Jesus’ way, with them or with us. He came to us out of love, to rescue us—it was love that took Him to the cross. As the priests put it, “He saved others, He cannot save Himself.” They were right. He could not save Himself, because by His own choice He was making His lifeblood the ransom for our lives. And they were right, too, when they said, “He trusts in God; let God deliver Him now.” God did deliver Him, three days later when He raised Him from the dead. And when Jesus rose, He raised us too—all of us who trust in Him, who will receive everlasting life from His hand on the day He returns.

We Pray: Dear Savior, thank You for saving us at the cost of Your own life. Amen.

Reflection Questions:
* Have people made fun of you? How hard was it to bear?
* Do you see the words “Let Him come down from the cross and we will believe in Him” as a real temptation? Why or why not?
* Why do you think God waited three days to raise Jesus?

Lenten Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo.
Originally published in The Lutheran Hour on April 4, 2023
Used by permission from International Lutheran Laymen’s League, all rights