Today is Good Friday, so my devotion is based on a prophecy by Isaiah 53:4-6 written long before Jesus lived on this earth. “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.”
Why would God strike his own Son? Did he deserve it? Of course, he didn’t. Jesus perfectly obeyed the commandments of God. He trusted in God’s promises. He was innocent of any wrongdoing, yet God forsook him. We know this because, at his crucifixion, Jesus cried out, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”.
Why would God strike his own Son instead of us? Didn’t we deserve it? If we are honest with ourselves, the only answer we can give is yes. Pure, unmerited grace motivated Jesus to do the unthinkable—accepting the punishment that we had earned for ourselves.
Please pray with me the prayer for today: Heavenly Father, gracious God, creator of all things, seen and unseen, I come before you as a sinner without hope without Jesus. Please help me remember when I view a cross with the image of the nail-pierced and bloody body of Christ on it, I will see in his wounds and death my reconciliation with God.. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.