Jesus hung between Heaven and Hell with a thief on His right and another on His left. One of the thieves insulted and ridiculed Him: “Aren’t you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!” Jesus didn’t respond to his remarks, but the man on the other side of Jesus said, “Don’t you fear God since you are under the same sentence? We are punished justly for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.”
Then the second thief said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” Jesus assured this man: “Truly, I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise” (Luke 23:39-43).
THINK ABOUT IT
Even though the first man hung on the cross, he was not remorseful or repentant for the things he did. Jesus didn’t respond to his insults. The second man, however, did repent, and he asked for mercy. Jesus responded with His amazing love and assurance that he would be with Him in Paradise.
Friend, you can have the same assurance. God wants all people to be with Him in Heaven. The problem is that sin cannot enter God’s kingdom. That’s why Jesus made the sacrifice to forgive you of sin. Will you accept what He did on the cross on your behalf? If you have not done this, the alternative is more emptiness, loneliness, guilt, despair, and anxiety. Today is the day of your salvation, a day to experience God’s amazing love and abundant life (John 3:16).
PRAY ABOUT IT
Father God, I pray for readers who do not know you in a personal way. Send your Spirit on them to make them aware of your presence in their lives and your amazing love. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Jesus, tired from a journey through Judea to Galilee, rested at Jacob’s well near the town of Sychar. It was noon when a Samaritan woman came to draw water. Jesus asked her for a drink. This seemed strange to her because He was a Jew and Jews didn’t associate with Samaritans. “How can you ask me for a drink?” she asked.
Jesus surprised her. “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.” She asked Him where would He get this living water. “Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself along with his sons and animals.” Then Jesus said, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. It will become a spring in them and well up into eternal life” (John 4:1-14).
Can you imagine this woman’s head spinning from all Jesus said? She was ready for the living water that would quench her thirst forever. He told her to go get her husband, and she said she didn’t have a husband. Jesus confronted her. “It’s true you do not have a husband, but you’ve had five husbands and the man you have now is not your husband.” I’m quite sure the woman wanted to flee, but she stayed to ask questions about God and worship. Then she went to town and told the people she met a man that knew all about her. “Could He be the Christ?” she asked.
THINK ABOUT IT
Although Jesus knew about this woman’s past and her bad reputation, He showed her love and respect instead of condemnation. In response to His love, she witnessed about Him in town, and brought people to meet Him. As a result, many in Sychar believed and invited Him to stay with them a couple days. This is good news even for us today. I have often related to the the woman at the well. The truth is, we have all been that woman, standing in the presence of God in the need of salvation. Be encouraged for, “There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1). Believe in Jesus and accept His amazing love as did the woman at the well. Today is the day of salvation.
PRAY ABOUT IT
Thank you Lord, for Jesus, for His amazing, life-changing love. I pray for those reading this story for the first time, that you send your Spirit on them and help them to believe you, trust you and follow you into eternity. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Man has wanted to be first since the beginning of time. Even the disciples asked Jesus, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”
How could they ask such a question? Wouldn’t they think Jesus is the answer?
But people have always strived to be recognized for their importance whether it is winning a sport’s race, a position in the business world, or an academic accomplishment.
Think about this for a minute. Could you name who won the Olympic gold medal in any sport for the year 2000 or the Nobel Peace Prize for 1990? I’m sorry but I can’t. Our success comes and goes and is buried with us when we leave this world. Only what is done for Christ lives on.
In answer to the disciples’ question, Jesus took a little child and said, “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:1-5).
THINK ABOUT IT
God wants us to be child-like in nature, not childish. He wants us to trust Him as a child trusts his parents. He provides for our needs, forgives us of our sins and gives us eternal life. It’s all ours for the asking. God loved the world so much He gave His only son to be our sacrifice for sin, because the wages of sin is death. Jesus paid for our sins with His life, but death could not hold Him. He rose from the grave so we would have eternal life. That is amazing love!
PRAY ABOUT IT
Thank you, Father God, for Jesus, and thank you for the salvation He accomplished for us. I pray for readers today who maybe have not experienced your amazing love. Please send your spirit on those who are searching and help them to find the truth, the truth that will set them free, free to love you and others. In Jesus’ name, Amen.