We’re all criminals on Good Friday

Two other men, both criminals, were also led out with him to be executed. When they came to the place called the Skull, they crucified him there, along with the criminals—one on his right, the other on his left…One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!” But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God,” he said, “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 he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”  Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.” Luke 23:32:-43  

The criminal hanging by Jesus’ side represents the very best any of us can hope to be in the story of the crucifixion.  Like him, we are all guilty of our own sin, our hearts marred by impurity and selfish desires and evil deeds.  Like him, we stand condemned and rightly so;  each and every one of us.  Like him, we are all desperately in need of the only one who is truly good to bring us into salvation.  May each of us approach God this Good Friday morning with the perspective, humility, and bold faith of that criminal.  Understanding our guilt,  but completely convinced that He bore it.  On this day, the darkest day in human history, may we fiercely cling to Jesus’ promise to that criminal – understanding that it applies to us as well – because if we weren’t all criminals, there would be no need for the cross; “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.”

all criminals on good friday image

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