Easter is such a great time to humble ourselves like little children. I still love Easter egg hunts. While I love chocolate and peanut butter like a kid, my greatest joy has been sharing the Easter story over the years.
Easter is such a great time to humble ourselves like little children. I still love Easter egg hunts.
While I love chocolate and peanut butter like a kid, my greatest joy has been sharing the Easter story over the years. I’m so honored to have had the window to tell the Easter story to little children.
Matthew 18:3 tells us: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”
This scripture simply means that by humbling ourselves like “little children,” we have confidence in the promises of Christ and faith—even in situations where we cannot “see” or envision.
As I prepared our front page for today, I began to pray for those likely to spend the rest of their lives in prison for their crimes.
If there is a silver lining for those incarcerated, crucifixions like Jesus and the two thieves endured are not observed here (people were crucified for all crimes in Rome, robbery included.) I was reminded today of the thieves placed on both sides of Jesus at His crucifixion.
The men, along with the crowd, belittled and mocked Jesus. As darkness began to set in on that day, in more ways than one, the thief on the right, according to scripture, asked Jesus to remember him when he went on to heaven. Jesus’ response was that he would be with him in paradise.
How could such a murderer be forgiven? Ever heard the old saying, “Hate the sin, not the sinner?” Well, that’s not in the Bible.
But we are assured in John 3:16 (NIV version): “For God so loved the world, he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
Some might wonder about the thief on the left? The Bible does not speak of him further (that is if he repented), as Jesus was soon to draw his last breath.
The penitent thief
The story of the penitent thief on the cross is found in the following Bible verses: Matthew 27:38; Luke 23:32-43; and Mark 15:27. It’s truly a beautiful story—one describing that a dying thief accepts Christ as Lord and Master and is assured by Jesus of a place with him in “paradise.”
This scripture to me is one of the most touching in the Bible. Even after both thieves had mocked him, along with the angry crowd, and he was bleeding, Jesus forgave the sinner who asked.
The Bible doesn’t give the names of the thieves, because I don’t think that was the bigger picture for humankind.
The point of this Bible lesson is to demonstrate to us a beautiful picture of God’s love as shown through Jesus and His mercy freely given to all.
To me, this story is truly one that depicts the beauty of the Easter season—new life, eternal.
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