John 12:27-28a (CEB)
27“Now I am deeply troubled. What should I say? ‘Father, save me from this time’? No, for this is the reason I have come to this time. 28Father, glorify your name!”
As we get closer to Good Friday, when we commemorate the death of Jesus, we need to remember that Jesus knew all along what was going to happen. Nothing took him by surprise. His arrest, the beating, the mockery, the crucifixion—it was all foretold in the prophesies.
Somehow, that makes it even more incredible. Can you imagine knowing that going to Jerusalem would result in your death, and then going anyway? Wouldn’t most people run in the opposite direction? The thing is: Jesus wasn’t here to save himself; he was here to save us.
Jesus was here to do a lot of good things. He taught us some great lessons. He brought clarity to God’s commands. But is ultimate goal—his primary mission—was to die for us.
Why? Well, did you ever try to mix oil and water? They don’t mix. You can stir and stir and stir, but the two will not go together. That’s exactly how it is with God and sin. The two are incompatible. So, if, as sinful beings, we are incompatible with God, how can we go to Heaven? The answer is only through God’s gift of Jesus’ sacrifice.
God said: I love you so much that I am sending my Son. He will bear the entire punishment for all of your sins so that you don’t have to. It’s a free gift. You don’t earn it. You don’t pay for it. All you have to do is accept it.
Part of accepting this gift is acknowledging we need it. We like to depend on ourselves—make it on our own. But only Jesus can erase our sins. In prayer, thank God for this amazing gift, and acknowledge the ways in which you are separating yourself from God.
If today’s devotion spoke to you in a particular way and you feel led to share your thoughts with others, please do so.