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DAILY DEVOTIONS
 

  In more than three decades of my Christian life, I have been blest by 2 types of Daily devos' (matter not exceeding 500 words) in universal Christian literature. Not only those Devos' which have a different theme everyday but also the ones which revolve around a certain theme over a period of time, say a fortnight, have richly edified me. In fact, both styles have their own inherent advantages. If the former style caters to the varying spiritual needs of a christian from day-to-day, the latter aims 'to ground' a child of God in a certain subject in order he derives the full benefits of the deep insightful study of a certain topic, spread over a fixed span of time.

In my Daily devo page, I have consciously tried to go in for 'a blend of both the styles' whereby within a constant theme, I would be aiming to focus on different facets of it which admittedly is a closer imitation of the 'Constant theme' style than the 'Varying topics' one.

Having dwelt on the topic of Christian journey and the “Conquest of Canaan” in the previous months, now in the month of March, considering that we are in the season of Lent, I intend to focus on the subject- “Lent season”.

Once again, let me wish you a happy and an edifying read…

Suresh Manoharan




March 15th

The three dimensions to the first word on the cross



When they came to the place called the Skull, there they crucified him, along with the criminals—one on his right, the other on his left. Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing."… - Luke 23:33-34
 
  Beginning today, I intend to cast light on the "Seven words of Jesus" on the cross, which are eloquent sermons in themselves. Said a Wise preacher that these seven words reminded him of a seven pearl lustrous necklace, woven around the common thread of his passion.

There are three dimensions to the first word, he uttered on the cross, steeped in spiritual import. All along Jesus’ had preached a loving disposition towards his enemies (Matt 5:43-45), now could his demeanor be any different on the Cross? So there he was, at a time when any in his place, could have bitterly railed at his transgressors interceding for them. Stephen, the first martyr was very much walking in his Master’s steps when in his final moments, he besought the forgiveness of his killers (Acts 7:60).

Jesus’ life had been marked by fulfillment of all prophecies concerning him right from his virgin birth onwards, so even in the cross, the prophecies regarding his final moments were getting fulfilled one after the other. While his murderers were assigning the middle cross to him on the Calvary hill all with the purpose of conveying the message, that he was a bigger criminal than the other two who were crucified along with him, they were merely fulfilling (unconsciously, of course) the prophecy recorded in Isaiah 53:12 which said “he was counted amongst the transgressors”. Right in that same verse was another prophecy “ he made intercession for his transgressors”, now that too was fulfilled, when Jesus’ spoke the very first word exuding loving forgiveness.

Also can we deny the fact that his killers were all figuring in the Divine redemption plan? As such they knew not, what they were doing…if they were actually thinking of extinguishing the Divine lamp, by shedding the Lamb’s blood they were actually oiling it. Oh the great wonder in the Divine scheme of things, were even the intended act of wickedness is used to bring forth good of lasting value.

Prayer:

Father, what a wonderful life it was of your Son, unique in all respects and unique even in death. Oh to live a life like him at all times. Grant us that privilege. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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