The Cross to the Grave, Part VI – Final Words

After quoting the first words of Psalm 22 (see The Cross to the Grave, Part III – Forsaken) Jesus speaks three more times before surrendering His human body to physical death. 

“I thirst.” (John 19:28)

“It is finished.” (John 19:30)

And crying with a loud voice, Jesus said, “Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit.” And when He had said this, He breathed out the spirit. (Luke 23:46)

Jesus speaks boldly, not with the faint heart of a tortured and dying human. His speech, described as “crying with a loud voice” shows the strength of his proclamation. A similar description was given by Matthew and Mark when Jesus quoted the first line of Psalm 22.

Christ’s life could only be given voluntarily by Christ himself: “For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life that I may take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This charge I have received from my Father.” (John 10:17-18)

In His last address to the Father, Jesus again quotes from a Psalm of David (Psalms 31:5). Jesus commits His spirit to the Father. The greek word translated as commit (G3908) means to place alongside, that is, present; by implication to deposit (as a trust or for protection). From the beginning to the end of His sacrifice on the cross, Jesus trusts the Father.

NEXT POST: The Grave to Glory, Part I

Fundamental Trust

In today’s world it’s difficult to trust. We are bombarded daily with media bias, opinions proclaimed as facts, conflicting science, cover-ups, and fraud. While public trust is eroding most of us still know people we can count on.

Who do you trust? A spouse or parent; sibling or close friend; physician or religious leader? Are you confident they will keep their promises? Does your trust come from experiences showing these people to be who they say, living true to their character? Trust in others is relative – based on past experiences, current situations, and hopes for the future. And yet, the most trustworthy people fail us at times.

THERE IS ONE WHO WON’T FAIL US.

God, creator of heaven and earth, is worthy of our trust. Scripture abounds with historical accounts of God fulfilling His promises – doing exactly what He said He would do. His actions show Him to be who He says – true to His character. In the Scriptures He has revealed, in part, the future and we can trust He will accomplish what He has declared.

Consider the miracles surrounding the birth of Jesus. Joseph trusted an angel of the Lord who appeared to him in dreams. Mary trusted the angel Gabriel, sent by God. Elizabeth and Zacharias believed the promises given through God’s prophets. On the night of Jesus’s birth shepherds believed angels, sent by God, and acted on their belief.

If you want a reminder that God is trustworthy, read the accounts of fulfilled promises, angelic interventions, and miraculous events recorded in the first two chapters of the Gospels of Matthew and Luke.

Then consider those whom God found trustworthy.

Proverb 3:5-6 says it well. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths.”

That’s what Joseph and Mary did. And Elizabeth and Zacharias. So did the shepherds. Will you do the same?

A Shared Cup

A Shared Cup. Image staged by Julie Anne. ©2019. Anne Monroe Designs. All rights reserved.

I filled my new cup three-quarters full; so I could see the blue butterfly that graces the inside rim. Three days ago I mailed my sister a cup just like mine.

On the outside of the white cup are more blue butterflies, poised around stems of blue larkspur. I chose this cup because my sister likes blue. Her cup arrived yesterday.

I took a sip of freshly-brewed coffee, then read the words on the cup.

The Lord’s mercies are new every morning.

A promise from God. I bought these two cups to remind my sister and me of our love for each other, and our shared faith in Christ Jesus, the Lord.

The Lord’s mercies . . .

My sister is blessed, and she knows this with certainty, even though like most of us she has some personal struggles. Others might question why she thinks God is so good.

. . . are new . . .

She is hopeful, always looking for the blessings that God brings to every situation. Some might think she is putting on an act. She isn’t.

. . . every morning.

My sister is faithful, every day, to trust in God and His mercies.  I know that her faith is genuine. I see the outcome – the strength and joy God gives her because of her faithfulness.

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Hope is just one of the Lord’s mercies.  And God gives it freely to those who seek Him.

Do you want to know more about God’s mercies? And how you can find hope for your life and your circumstances? Do you want to know how to seek God? Please reach out using the CONTACT menu at the top of the page and let’s have a conversation, starting with your questions.

NOTE: “The Lord’s mercies are new every morning” is a paraphrase from the Lamentations of Jeremiah, Chapter 3, verses 22-23.