Today You Shall Be With Me
Today You Shall Be With Me
Sometimes people get to judging others and thinking “that person” will never get into heaven because they are a “sinner” — as if everyone isn’t. The fact is that everyone who gets into heaven is a sinner, who in no way deserves to be there.
Since God seems to have a way of working things so that we have plenty of lessons to learn from the history He presents in His word, it seems possible that one of the thieves, who died with Jesus, was led to that moment, just to teach us the surety of God’s grace. The account is in Luke 23:39-43.
And one of the criminals who were hanged there was hurling abuse at Him, saying, “Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us!”
But the other answered, and rebuking him said, “Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.”
And he was saying, “Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!”
And He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.”
This criminal did nothing other than recognize Jesus for who He was and believe that Jesus truly was the eternal King of the Jews, as the inscription above His head stated.
In spite of all his past sins — in spite of the fact that he no longer had a chance to do a bunch of good works — in spite of the fact that he was not an upstanding member in the synagogue — this criminal entered Paradise the moment he died that day.
Why? Because he was sincere in his testimony and pleading request. He believed.
Jesus did not say that this criminal needed to first go through a cleansing punishment for all his sins. Jesus was paying for his sins at that very moment. Without any further questioning or setting up of requirements, this criminal would go straight to heaven. He would get to spend all eternity with our Lord Jesus Christ.
This man trusted Jesus’ promise. He did not start asking, “Well, what can I try to do before I die?” There was no surprised comment saying, “Really? Are you kidding me?”
He just accepted Jesus at His word. That is faith. We all need to take Jesus at His word. And, Jesus’ word in John 3:16 says,
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.
And so, by faith, we will be with Jesus in Paradise the moment we die. That is a most comforting promise from the eternal Lord and God over all.
As we think about all the words of comfort Jesus gives us in His word, we will say, “Hallelujah! Jesus’ promises are sure.”
A Christian devotional to glorify the LORD of lords and GOD of gods.
Pray for our country.
The LORD made this day, let us rejoice and be glad in Him.
The word of the LORD is tried;
He is a shield to all who take refuge in Him.
Sing for joy in the LORD, O you righteous ones;
Praise is becoming to the upright.
How blessed are those who dwell in Thy house!
They are ever praising Thee.
Just as a father has compassion on his children,
So the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him.
O give thanks to the LORD, for He is good;
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
Glory in His holy name;
Let the heart of those who seek the LORD be glad.
Not that I have already obtained it, or have already become perfect, but I press on in order that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus.