40 Days to the Cross: Reflections from Great Thinkers (Week One: Monday)

Monday

Confession: Psalm 25:1–5

To you, O Yahweh, I lift up my soul.

O my God, I trust you; let me not be put to shame.

Do not let my enemies exult over me.

Indeed, none who wait for you should be put to shame.

Those who betray without cause should be put to shame.

Make me know your ways, O Yahweh.

Teach me your paths.

Cause me to walk in your truth and teach me,

because you are the God of my salvation.

I await you all day long.

Reading: Mark 9:30–32

And from there they went out and passed through Galilee. And he did not want anyone to know, for he was teaching his disciples and was telling them, “The Son of Man is being betrayed into the hands of men, and they will kill him. And when he is killed, after three days he will rise.” But they did not understand the statement, and they were afraid to ask him.

Reflection

Oh, do not forget to admire infinitely more the dear Lord Jesus, that promised seed. He willingly said, “Lo, I come,” though under no obligation so to do, “to do your will,” to obey and die for men, “O God!” Did you weep just now, when I bid you fancy you saw the altar, the wood laid in order, and Isaac laid bound on the altar? Look by faith. Behold the blessed Jesus, our all-glorious Emmanuel—not bound, but nailed on a cursed tree. See how he hangs crowned with thorns and in derision of all that are around Him. See how the thorns pierce Him, and how the blood in purple streams trickle down His sacred temples! Hark how the God of nature groans! See how He bows His head, and at length humanity gives up the ghost! Isaac is saved, but Jesus, the God of Isaac, dies. A ram is offered up in Isaac’s room, but Jesus has no substitute. Jesus must bleed. Jesus must die. God the Father provided this Lamb for himself from all eternity. He must be offered in time, or man must be damned for evermore.

And now, where are your tears? Shall I say, refrain your voice from weeping? No; rather let me exhort you to look to Him whom you have pierced. Mourn as a woman mourneth for her first-born. For we have been the betrayers, and we have been the murderers of this Lord of glory. Shall we not bewail those sins, which brought the blessed Jesus to the accursed tree? Having so much done, so much suffered for us, so much forgiven, shall we not love much! Oh! let us love Him with all our hearts, and minds, and strength, and glorify Him in our souls and bodies, for they are His.

—George Whitefield

Abraham’s Offering Up His Son Isaac

Response

Christ willingly died for you and has forgiven you. Consider the paths you have turned from and the roads that you are treading on right now. Pray that you would do everything out of love for Him and a desire to use your time for Him.[1]

 

[1] Van Noord, R., & Strong, J. (Eds.). (2014). 40 Days to the Cross: Reflections from Great Thinkers. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

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