September 03, 2020
And he was saying, “Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” and He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.” (Luke 23:43)
Jesus is the only Savior. No one else can provide forgiveness of sin and a Divine introduction into the presence of God. No one can take a man from hell to heaven and death to life but the Messiah. And no one can do this is an instant and in any moment.
THE IMMEDIACY OF CHRIST’S SALVATION
He is capable of this work at any moment, with no restrictions or limitations. At the final moments of his death on the cross, the Devil, no doubt, felt he had Jesus completely stripped of any power. There Jesus hung, naked and dying. The end had come and surely Jesus was impotent on the cross. But even in this state, Jesus illustrated His complete mastery—His overwhelming ability to save a man from an eternal hell at any moment.
THE REQUIREMENT OF FAITH
But there is one man-ward requirement for this salvation. We must believe. We must turn in dependence to the only Savior.
Faith is looking to Jesus. The thief on the cross recognized his sin and need and turned in simple faith to Jesus. “Remember me when You come into Your kingdom,” he cried. The immediate response of the Savior to this humble, last minute cry of faith, was to do what the Savior does. He saved him—not from his impending physical death—but from an eternal death in hell.
This call and this salvation is available at the midnight hour. Yet you must cry out in faith. One should not put off salvation, thinking they can live an unrepentant life and make a final call to Jesus, for we do not know what our condition will be at death. Matthew Henry said, “This gives no encouragement to any to put off their repentance to their death-bed, or to hope that then they shall find mercy; for, though it is certain that true repentance is never too late, it is as certain that late repentance is seldom true.” It is seldom true but it is true that a man’s last words could be a cry that Jesus hears and responds to with saving power.
YOU SHALL BE WITH ME IN PARADISE
Could there be seven more important words? Jesus returned this man to the paradise He is preparing for all who believe. And His assurance was that this transfer would be complete and immediate.
How could this be? You must remember that Jesus is the Savior. The One who was seated at the Father’s right hand; laid aside His privileges and was born of a virgin; lived a sinless life; voluntarily went to the cross to take the penalty for our sin; was buried in a borrowed tomb; rose victorious over death and hell and ascended to the Father, returning to His right hand. The Savior!
No one else can save us; but He CAN and WILL save all who cry out to Him in faith.
Father, thank You for Your incredible mercy. Thank You for Your power to save. Thank You that You can override all of Satan’s authority and snatch a man from hell. Thank You that You can and will save anyone, anytime who looks to You. Let me never judge the potential of someone’s salvation for that potential lies not in their worthiness, but Your faithfulness. And, thank You that in Your mercy You saved me!
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September 24, 2020
September 23, 2020
September 22, 2020
It is said of Martin Luther that he dreamed he was transported to heaven and there noticed thousands of boxes with his name on them. When he asked the angel what they were, the angel replied, “These are answers to prayers that have never been asked.”
God has much more for us. He reminds us that “we have not because we ask not” (James 4:2).