Devotional Thoughts for Today
Luke 23: 22-25
“Then he said to them the third time, “Why, what evil has He done? I have found no reason for death in Him. I will therefore chastise Him and let Him go.” But they were insistent, demanding with loud voices that He be crucified. And the voices of these men and of the chief priests prevailed. So Pilate gave sentence that it should be as they requested. And he released to them the one they requested, who for rebellion and murder had been thrown into prison; but he delivered Jesus to their will.”
It was exactly three times that Pontius Pilate made known to the people that Jesus was an innocent man. “I have found no reason for death in Him,” (v.22) he shouted. “But they were insistent, demanding with loud voices that He be crucified. And the voices of these men and of the chief priests prevailed.” (v.23). It was a somber and grim day when an innocent man was condemned to die by the very people for whom Jesus spent years loving and ministering.
How could this be? How could the same crowd that welcomed Jesus into Jerusalem with exuberant joys now be urging for his crucifixion? It is confounding. Why would anyone with even a slightly sound mind demand the release of a murderer (“notorious prisoner”—Matt 27:16) over a peaceful man whose crime they could not account?
The explanation is God. They would have had no power over Him unless it was given from above (John 19:11). Isaiah 53:10 say, “Yet it was the will of the LORD to crush him; he has put him to grief.” It was only by the designation of our incredibly good God that such an unexplainable turn of events could occur without reason. This is the sovereignty of God. What appeared to be a confusing moment in history was the process through which God was establishing salvation. All of mankind would benefit from what will come out of this one confusing moment in history. To see God in everyday life, through all of the challenges and trials, it is important for us not to lose sight of God’s sovereign power that is always at work for us.
As for us, we need not complain in our moments of discomfort and lack of understanding. Instead, when we recognize the mighty hand of God that prevails over all things, we shall choose to worship and offer up thanksgiving. As we do this, we will be anchored in peace no matter how difficult it may be at times to see the goodness of God. As we wait on Him in this way, we will see that the Lord will certainly bring us out of any grim days with an experience of His goodness and promise to work all things for the great good of those who love Him! (Rom 8:28)
Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, how great thou art! I worship You this day and lift up praises to You because You are Lord over all. Forgive me for times that I make You small in my thinking and lose sight of Your intention to work all things out for my good. Help me Lord to hold onto the truths of who You are and find strength to wait upon You in all things. Thank you! Amen.
Lunch Break Study
Read Psalm 103:1-5: “Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits: who forgives all your iniquities, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, who satisfies your mouth with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”
Questions to consider
- What is one thing in your life right now that may seem “grim”?
- What are some ways that you can process this “grimness” in light of God’s truth for you? Search some verses in God’s Word that give you perspective from the mind of Christ in you. Hold onto His promise.
- Take a writing pad and write a song or psalm unto the Lord that gives Him praise for who He is and all that He is doing in your life (despite how hard it has been).
- We often process life from a moment to moment perspective, thereby becoming overwhelmed and hopeless. However, God is confidently working out goodness in our lives. He has a perspective of a wider scope. His perspective is eternal, not momentary. Hence it says in 2 Corinthians 4:17, “For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory…” So we have every reason to hold onto hope during our dark and difficult days. God will certainly bring us out from them!
- Nahum 1:7; Ps 34:8; Ps. 31:19; 1 Timothy 4:4; Exodus 34:6; Jeremiah 29:11
- Thanksgiving and praise lift off the dark cloud that can loom over our minds and empower us to strength and peace.
Bible Reading for today: Galatians 4
In light of our reflection this morning on the sovereign goodness of God at work in our lives, how were you able to process difficulties today in the light of this truth?