“Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
Naked He came into the world and naked He would leave it. But Oh the glory and honour and majesty and grace with which Jesus was clothed then and forever.
The world mocked and laughed at Him, scourged and spat upon Him, rejected and crucified Him. Yet His first words, after the brutal nails and tearing pain of the cross, summed up His ministry as it embraced the soldiers, religious leaders and the shouting crowd,
“Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
Quietly and without fanfare He took into Himself the sins of those around Him and the sins of the whole world – all the sin and sins of those who had been, those who were then, and those who were to come. Reaching down the pathway of the centuries His words, His life, His death and the resurrection to come, embrace you and embrace me and reach lovingly beyond us.
“God made him who had no sin to be sin for us,” (2 Corinthians 5:21)
When we turn and fall into sin – whether once or again and again and again – our sin, by the wonderful grace of God, is already on the cross where it has been fully dealt with by Jesus. We can cringe alone in wretched fear and shame. But, gloriously instead, we are welcome now to approach and kneel before the Father. There, with deeply saddened heart, we are able to confess and both ask for and receive His cleansing and liberating forgiveness and strengthening help.
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)
Such love is beyond our understanding, but not beyond our knowing.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
However, as we have been loved and forgiven – so do we need to love and forgive! It may not be quick or easy but God will help us get there.
Where sin seeks to separate me from the Father, His love draws me to Him.
Read John chapters 16-21 this week.
Help me Lord God to trust and accept Your love – from which nothing is able to separate me. And also help me not to withhold it from others. Amen.