All For Love (Gethsemane) Lent Devotional

Posted by Craig Borlase on 28 March 2018

On the day that we remember Jesus on the cross, it does us good to go back 800 years before Christ’s death and remember the words of Isaiah:

‘He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.

Like one from whom people hide their faceshe was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering,

yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted.

But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities;

the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.

We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way;

and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.’

[Isaiah 53:3-6]

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Thought

Isaiah's poem is the clearest possible explanation of sin and atonement. It is quoted throughout the New Testament and points to the life of Jesus and the salvation of His people.

It reminds us that He came because of our sin. Jesus wasn't 'stricken by God’, but 'was crushed for our iniquities'. It was our sin, our wrongdoing, our wanderings away from God's laws that He died for. And His precious blood paid the price, bringing us back out of exile and home to God.

Writing to the church in Rome, Paul adds his thoughts on it all:

‘For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life!’ [Romans 5:10].

It’s powerful stuff. So powerful that we can’t just shrug our response. We either acknowledge and accept it or we reject it our of hand.

There is no grey area on this.

Invitation

All for love, Jesus’ arms are outstretched on the cross, an invitation to all to approach Him. All for love, they are also outstretched in a way that tells us to stop, to look and know that from here on in, everything changes.

All for love, Jesus made the first move. While we were against Him, His death put things right. Jesus has bought us back, made the ultimate exchange and prepared the way for us to approach God.

What does it mean for us to accept that today?

Prayer

Lord Jesus, I say yes to you. Yes to your ways, to trusting you, to living my life wholly devoted to you.

Amen

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