Tag Archive | easter week devotional

Mark 14:37 ” Then He returned to His disciples and found them sleeping…”

It could have been me among that group of dosing disciples.  There they were in the Garden of Gethsemane, having just been warned by Jesus to watch and pray as He moved off to pray alone.  Coming back to them, Jesus was dismayed to find them all sleeping and asked, “Are you sleeping?  Could you not keep watch for one hour?  Watch and pray so that you won’t fall into temptation.  The spirit is willing, but the body is weak.” (Mark 14:38)  Yes, it could have been me that Jesus found asleep.  For how many times have I started to pray only to have my mind wander and become distracted after only a few minutes?

Luke 22:34 ” Jesus answered, ‘I tell you, Peter, before the rooster crows today, you will deny three times that you know Me.’ “

That could have been me in place of Peter.   How can I self-righteously think that I would have behaved any differently?  Peter had followed Jesus for three years, watching as He preached, healed, and performed miracle after miracle.  But despite all Peter had been part of, he still denied he even knew who Jesus was.  Yes, it could have easily been me disowning the Lord.  For any time I allow fear to mute my voice in speaking the truth of God…I’m silently renouncing Him…more afraid of possible retribution or embarrassment than speaking up.  That’s because when I’m silent instead of standing up for what’s right and good and godly…I’m quietly condoning sin.

Isaiah 53:5 ” But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought peace was upon Him, and by His wounds we are healed.”

Man has always willfully rebelled and rejected God.  But God looked past that rejection and sent His Son into the world to save it.  Jesus Christ took upon Himself the punishment for the sins of all mankind…He willingly was broken, wounded and killed that we might live.   Romans 4:25 tells us, “He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.”   Today we have that blessed assurance of  righteousness through Christ Jesus…and as we look at the empty cross and tomb, we can with confidence proclaim…He is not there, He is risen!

Psalm 42:5 ” Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, my Savior and my God.”

The whole of mankind hoped with eager anticipation…awaiting the promise of the fulfillment of the coming Messiah…only to watch Him die a terrible and horrific death on the Cross.  The day after that shocking event, the human soul was holding its breath…struggling to remember the words of Jesus  while despair tried to crowd out any shred of hope.  Human life hung in the balance between hope and hopelessness that fateful day.  But God is the God of hope, (Romans 15:13) and we have this hope as an anchor. (Hebrews 6:19)  So if today,  you’re facing the impossible, the incurable, the irreversible…put your hope in God and fix your eyes on Him.  For if God can raise Jesus from the dead, He can breathe life into your sick, dying body, revive a struggling marriage, or break the chains of addiction off a loved one.  For as long as there is hope, there’s life.

Isaiah 49:6 ” I will also make You a light for the Gentiles, that You may bring My salvation to the ends of the earth.”

Jesus told His Disciples, “Go and make disciples of all nations.” (Matthew 28:19)   And for Believers, the Great Commission holds true for us today.  The Lord is the God of salvation and the Gospel message, the Good News of Jesus, is to be brought to the scattered children of God. (John 11:52)  We are to take this light – this truth –  to every man (John 1:9)…for it gives revelation. (Luke 2:32)   God’s plan and purpose is for the Gospel message to be brought to the ends of the earth by the feet of His Believers…for as the truth of His light is spread abroad, darkness must flee.

Isaiah 42:6-7 ” I, the Lord, have called You in righteousness; I will take hold of Your hand. I will keep You and will make You to be a covenant for the people and a light for the Gentiles, to open eyes that are blind, to free captives from prison and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness.”

God’s plan was to save the nations through the coming Messiah, Jesus Christ.  In this Scripture, Isaiah foretells of this plan and purpose…or what we call the New Covenant.  Jesus explained this plan and purpose to Paul on that fateful road to Damascus in Acts 26:18 when He said, “I am sending you to them to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.”  And God has faithfully maintaining that covenant with all mankind…offering salvation and life… and the chance to break free of the chains of bondage that hold us prisoner.

Isaiah 52:13-14 ” See, My servant will act wisely; He will be raised and lifted up and highly exalted. Just as there were many who were appalled at Him – His appearance was so disfigured beyond that of any man and His form marred beyond human likeness -“

Here the Prophet Isaiah speaks of the punishment Jesus endured…the flogging, beating, and bludgeoning He bore at the hands of the priests, elders, scribes, and Roman soldiers. (Mark 14:65)  The Son of Man was battered beyond identification…disfigured beyond human semblance…for you.  He endured it all for you… that you may have fellowship with God and the gift of eternal life.