Throughout the Synoptic Gospels in the Bible, we will read about the account of how Jesus was mocked, beaten and tortured, all the way to a place called Golgotha. And finally yielded up his spirit after crying out with a loud voice, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? That’s Good Friday for us in the Christian calendar. Today, we rejoice because it is Resurrection Sunday! For He has risen from the dead.
At Jesus’ crucifixion, two robbers were crucified with Jesus, one on the right and one on the left. Many years ago, someone wrote on the notes page of an old Bible, about the deaths of the two robbers and Jesus. One died with sin in him and on him. Another died with sin in him but not on him. The third died with sin on him but not in him.
The first thief seems to have died an angry man. Angry for being having caught for the crime. Likely angry with the judge who sentenced him. And seems to have been especially angry with the name Jesus who hung innocently at his side, who claimed to be the light and hope of the world, then hung like a common criminal, not even saving Himself from death. This thief died with his own sin in him and on him.
The second thief also joined the others who ridiculed and insulted Jesus (Matthew 27:37-44). But the Bible tells us that as the darkness closed in, this second thief had a change of heart. Turning to Jesus, he said “Jesus, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.” Jesus answered him, ‘I tell you the truth, today you will be with Me in paradise” (Luke 23:39-43). This was perhaps one of the most important conversation ever recorded. Forgiveness of sins and eternal life is given to anyone who trust Jesus for the forgiveness of their sins. Faith alone in Christ determines our eternal destiny.
Jesus died with sin on him but not in him.
Jesus shouldered the guilt of the world. He died with the weight of the world’s sin on Him but not the slightest wrong in Him.
Three days later, He rose from the dead to show that His death, tragic as it was, was not a mistake. Today we are able to celebrate Easter Sunday or Resurrection Sunday because Jesus has conquered death. Sin has no claim on Him.
Will you respond if Jesus calls you today just as the way He called His first disciples, “Come and see!“. Come and taste the greatest gift that God has given to this sinful world. The GIFT of salvation.
Elder Andrew Lim