Lent: Day Forty

After a long journey we have reached our goal. It was a modest objective, just to blog something about my ongoing spiritual insights for each day of my Lenten observance. I began Lent with my life in a dry space and in the midst of change (see Lent: Day Two) and I am ending it with a slightly clearer picture on several fronts, but still no sure place to call my church home. However, I am learning more about patience, so I am in no hurry to put down roots ahead of God’s leading.

Today is also the last posting on the last seven words of Jesus upon the cross. I pray these little meditations have been helpful to you.

The Last Seven Words of Jesus

Seventh phrase: “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.”

The son, abandoned to sin, now turns in faith to his Father in the sure hope of resurrection, taking the first steps on the path that all of us who follow him will tread upon.

It is very fitting that the fight for the life of Terri Schiavo should play itself out at this time, for indeed, as her life ebbs away, she steps onto the same path her Lord has already trod.

Earlier in his ministry, Jesus had told his disciples “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.” With his impending death only moments away, Jesus becomes the first man, the first born among many brothers, to walk the path of redemption, showing the way for all of us to follow. The thief, to whom he promised paradise, will shortly follow, the first of many, and unless something unexpected happens, Terri will join them shortly.

Redemption has now taken a specific, singular path; it is only by faith in the shed blood of the only Son of God. There is no better place for it to be. Looking forward to this beginning moment of salvation Jesus had said

I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. John 10:28-29

Speaking further to the uniqueness of this specific, singular path of salvation, Jesus further said

I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6

With Jesus’ hand wrapped tightly around us and his fingerprints on our soul, we will finally arrive, along with him, at the end of our journey, at the purpose of our existence.

Father, into your hands we too commit our spirits and for your loving consideration, the spirit of Terri Schiavo. In your mercy, O Lord, hear our prayer.

  2 comments for “Lent: Day Forty

  1. March 26, 2005 at 1:12 pm

    Thank you for “The Last Words” series. I just wrote on “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”. It’s called “About the Ninth Hour”. There is talk among some bloggers about penal substitution that bothered me. They don’t think God’s wrath was on His Son. I argue God’s wrath was on us, our sin, but Jesus felt it just the same since our sins were in Him. He was separated from His Father as we are when in our sin. We become all too accustomed to it, but for Jesus, it must have been Hell, literally.
    Hope you had a good trip!
    Perhaps I could email you about the other comment I left a few days ago, since you have been busy as of late. Have a blessed Easter.

  2. March 26, 2005 at 3:07 pm

    Paul’s statement in 2 Corinthians 5:1 “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him,” belies the argument that the Father’s wrath did not rest on his son who became sin.

    This is a deep subject that would take considerable posting to cover, but one thing to note is the correlation in the passage between sin and righteousness in the son. That should help balance out the understanding.

    If I am remembering correctly you asked two questions: did I eat kosher (I am not against it but I don’t follow it religiously either), and what was kenosis all about? I commented on that comment for you to look at chapter five in Packer’s book, since he covers the issues succinctly.

    I hope that helps.

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