Jesus came to this world not to rule but to help the helpless and redeem the lost. He came not to punish but to forgive. It was Jesus final moment on the cross. He was nailed on the cross along with two thieves. He was losing his energy. He was tortured the whole previous night. Pilot punished him with 40 lashes the next day morning. Then he was made to carry the cross to Golgotha. There he was nailed on the cross. He went through excruciating three hours of battle on the cross. When he was about to die one of the thieves hanging on the cross asked him a favor.
The thief spent all his life as a rebel. There was nothing good in him. He enjoyed the suffering of others. Now he was on the cross. Almost struggling for every breath. The thief knew he cannot escape death. But the thief realized there was something special with the man next to him on the cross. Within a few minutes, he understood what the world (many of the Israelites) could not understand for many years. The thief realized the man hanging next to him was God in human form. Yes, Jesus is the promised Messiah. The thief had the complete revelation on sin, forgiveness, and hope in his dieing moment.
The thief concluded within himself that, it was his last chance to get his sins cleaned. He looked at Jesus and said, “ Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom”. Jesus looked at him. The thief did not do anything worthy of forgiveness. He killed others and rebelled against everyone. He deserved to die for his deeds according to Roman law.
The world has the habit to judge and condemn other men quickly. But God’s judgment always results in forgiveness. He is quick to forget our errors but remembers our good deeds forever.
Jesus looked at the thief and said, “Truly I tell you, today you will be in Paradise”. The world looks at the worthiness of fellow men based on their talents and qualifications. For God, the thief was his creation. His loving creation. Jesus knew the thief when he was formed in his mother’s womb. The thief was his loving child. God do not expect any qualification or worthiness from men. We enter heaven on God’s worthiness and qualification not on ours.
Very similar to the thief, do you look at God for forgiveness? God calls you as you are. He does not expect anything from you. He loves you as you are. Independent of your condition and the darkest past God loves you. He cares for you. Would you commit your life for Jesus?
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