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View daily reading plan: Luke 23.33-34

Crucifixion is unimaginably awful. The Romans invented this degrading, cruel, painful method of execution in order to deter would-be criminals and trouble makers. Six thousand rebel slaves were crucified following the Spartacus uprising in 71 BC. It was horrible, degrading barbarity.

To crucify rebel slaves is bad enough, but why crucify a man proved and declared innocent? And given that this man was the Son of God, what could be worse? What greater insult to the Creator? What worse sin to stain the fabric of humanity? The One who was the Lord of Glory suffered this extreme degradation, nailed to an old rugged cross (1 Cor 2.8).

He was crucified and slain “by wicked hands” (Acts 2.23), Roman hands at the end but Jewish ones at the beginning.  And He prayed, “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do.” They did not know, or want to know, the Lord of glory. They crucified Him as a criminal, unwanted and unrecognised.

But we know Him, and we know He died for us. What can we say? How about Isaac Watts’ words?

When I survey the wondrous cross
On which the Prince of Glory died,
My richest gain I count but loss,
And pour contempt on all my pride.
Go on, sing it!

Friday, 29 March, 2024

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