Surely one of the most painful experiences a parent can ever face is watching one of their children die, and watching that child being tortured and executed has to be the worst. Roman crucifixion was designed to scare people into thinking twice before becoming violent criminals or revolutionaries. Those who were condemned to crucifixion would suffer for hours, and perhaps days, before death finally brought them release. A revolutionary and a murderer, Barabbas, was scheduled to die, but the Jewish leaders hated and feared Jesus more than Barabbas. They demanded that Jesus be crucified instead and requested that Barabbas be set free.
As Jesus saw His mother and His closest disciple helplessly looking on, He made a final request to His mother. Eugene Peterson translated Jesus’ words in The Message, “Woman here is your son.” To His beloved disciple He said, “Here is your mother.” Jesus was suffering and dying for the sins of the world, but still He cared about what would happen to His mother after He was gone. He placed her in the care of His most loved, and probably most trusted, disciple. He was concerned about His mother’s future living arrangements! Verse 27 notes that “from that hour that disciple took her into his own home.”
As we contemplate the enormous sacrifice Jesus made for the world, let us not forget that He also is concerned about our daily lives, that we are cared for and loved on a daily basis and especially in our times of deepest need!
Prayer: Loving and forgiving Lord, may your example on the cross help us to always remember that changing the world means serving the world as you would. Enable us to see each person as one of your children, worthy of our service and our love. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen
Rob & Bettina Sandford