Sunday, February 23, 2014


"And a superscription also was written over Him in letters of Greek, and Latin, and Hebrew, THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS.  And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on Him, saying, If thou be Christ, save Thyself and us.  But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation?  And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this Man hath done nothing amiss.  And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when Thou comest into Thy kingdom.  And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with Me in paradise" (Lk. 23:38-43).

1.  God used Pontius Pilate to declare the truth in three languages, so that all who were witnessing the Crucifixion, would know that Jesus Christ IS the King of the Jews (Jn. 19:19).
2.  Both thieves "blasted Jesus" at first (Mt. 27:44), but one had watched and listened to the Lord's praying, especially for His enemies (Lk. 23:34), and had come to realize that Jesus WAS his Lord.  He knew he had sinned, and he knew he deserved to die.  But watching Jesus, He had come to faith!
3.  Jesus recognized his repentance, understood his statement as a confession of Him as his Lord, and He promised him he would be with Him in paradise.  Later, the Apostle Paul wrote, "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.  For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation" (Rom. 10:9-10).
4.  The repentant thief did not need to do anything to be saved, except believe in Jesus as his Lord!  He did not have to walk an aisle.  He did not have to say "the sinner's prayer!"  He did not have to be baptized!  He did not have to join "the right church" (it had not come into existence as yet - Acts 2)!  He did not have to do anything but BELIEVE!
5.  Like salvation has been from the day Adam sinned (Gen. 3), until the day Christ finishes His one thousand year reign on earth (Rev. 20:5), it is by faith in what God says; Abraham believed God and his faith was counted unto him for righteousness (Rom. 4:3; Gal. 3:6; Jam. 2:23)!  It is believing God's Word that saves, and Jesus is the personification of God's Word (Jn. 1:1, 14; 1 Jn. 1:1; 5:7; Rev. 19:13)! 
 Salvation is not the result of anything, but faith in our resurrected Lord!

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