Volume 31 Number 38

Save Yourself

In Luke’s account of the crucifixion, he records Jesus saying, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (23:33). Were these empty words or did forgiveness occur? Luke records two other accounts when Jesus forgave sins; the crippled man lowered through the roof (5:20), and the sinful woman with the perfume (7:48).

Again at the crucifixion, Luke records three groups of people mocking Jesus.

  1. The rulers: “He saved others; let him save himself if he is the Christ of God, the Chosen One.” (23:34)
  2. The soldiers: “If you are the king of the Jews, save yourself.” (23:35)
  3. A thief on the cross: “Aren’t you the Christ?  Save yourself and us!” (23:38)

The irony is, while they were telling Jesus to save Himself, He was actually saving them (if they would later accept it). His sacrifice on the cross provided salvation for all mankind. He refused salvation so He could give salvation.

One of the two thieves being executed with Jesus requested this salvation. He showed a fear of God (23:39) and recognized the innocence of Jesus (23:40). But, how did he know Jesus was innocent? Was he with Him during the trials? Did he hear Jesus teach or perform miracles previously? We don’t know. The thief did ask, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom” (23:41).

What kingdom is this criminal thinking of? Many of Jesus’ closest disciples thought His kingdom was of this earth. Did the thief not see that Jesus was near death? It must not be an earthly kingdom then. How much knowledge did this thief have if he understood Jesus’ teachings when His disciples didn’t?

Just as Jesus forgave the crippled man and the sinful woman, He forgave this man for He said, “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise” (23:42).

So you may ask, how can we get forgiveness from our sins as well? Do we have to be lowered through a roof, wash and anoint someone’s feet, or die on a cross. These actions are all acts of humility. Through humility do we make Him our master (18:14-17). All three people Jesus personally forgave in Luke’s gospel were in a state of humility. Do we need to display humility to gain forgiveness?

On the day of Pentecost the people asked Peter, “Brothers, what shall we do?” Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off–for all whom the Lord our God will call.” With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day (Acts 2:37-41).

Jay Crook
Weber Road Church of Christ
Corpus Christi, TX

Prayer Requests

From Sherri and Randy Lange: Please pray for my sister and brother-in-law, Russ and Vicki Flaherty.  Russ had surgery in Iowa City and prayers would very much be appreciated.

Please continue to pray for:

  • Karen Carico is at Taylor House.  Please remember her in prayer as well as her family!
  • A friend of Mitch and Jo, Joey Goodale, was seriously injured during football and is still in a coma.
  • Karen Belk’s sister had a stroke and will have a long recovery.
  • Karen Hardy’s chemotherapy is not working and is undergoing tests.
  • Doris Gaulke’s cancer has returned but she will not be continuing chemotherapy.
  • Glen and Marge Stevens in dealing with Glen’s illness.
  • Toni Lovejoy’s father who has advanced prostate cancer and her grandmother diagnosed with lung cancer.
  • Bob McClaran’s sister, Nathalie, who lives in South Carolina is in need of a transplant for her  eye.
  • Bob Kunce, Kim Greer’s father; Jean Cook, Archie’s mother, who all have cancer
  • Kimball Matkins, who has ALS —there is a website that chronicles his life at: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/kimballmatkins.

News and Notes

ADVANCED PREACHING CLASS is tentatively scheduled to begin on Sunday morning, Nov. 2nd. In this class we will be dissecting sermons by Jesus, Peter, and Paul; looking at ‘styles’ of preaching. How did they preach? How did they construct their sermons?  This class is open to any of the male members at Grandview and will be conducted during the morning Bible class hour on Sundays. Please let Art know if you plan to take this class (first time or refresher) so we will be sure to have enough booklets ready for the class.

TEEN GATHERING: The Grandview Teens will be meeting for fun and food at the Walkers IMMEDIATELY following Sunday evening services on Sept 21.  Please bring beverages and desserts (like cookies or bars).  Parents of teens are welcome to come and stay.  The events ends at 9:00 pm.

MEN AND BOYS CAMPOUT: The men and boys campout will be at Yellow Banks park on Oct 10.

GIRLS AND WOMEN sleepover is also on Oct 10 at Missy Thompson’s home. Details will follow.

Midwest Bible Camp: The Lake Darling Youth Center, home to Midwest Bible Camp, is in the process of looking for a new supervisor for camp next summer.  John & Cheryl Kinyon and Jeff & Kim Abrams have indicated that they will not be back next summer.  If you or someone you know has an interest in this position, please contact Jerry King, President of the LDYC board.  His email address is papaking34@yahoo.com.  A big thank you to the Kinyons and Abrams for their many years of service.

Calendar of Events

Sep 21-24 Gospel Meeting Sixth Street church of Christ in  Hampton
Oct 5 AM Potluck
Oct 11 STC—Owatonna  Ladies Day
Oct 11 All Day Meeting—Marshalltown Church of Christ  Office 641-753-6467
Oct 25 Ogden’s Ladies Day and Men’s Renewal
Oct 26 Friends and Family Day

Central Iowa Missions

Sep 21 – Osceola – Mitch Mort
Sep 28 – Osceola – Michael Mazak

Birthdays & Anniversaries

Sep 21  Lew & Linda Kirk
Sep 23  Alfred Johnson
Sep 23  Crystal Lange
Sep 24  Dan & Nan Nelson
Sep 24  Jake Ferrell

End of this issue.