Devotion for February 9, 2023

“… and then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand and knelt in front of him and mocked him. ‘Hail, king of the Jews!’ they said.” (Matthew 27:29)

The hymnist Isaac Watts wrote, “See from His head, His hands, His feet, sorrow and love flow mingled down. Did e’er such love and sorrow meet, or thorns compose so rich a crown?”

Jesus wore a crown of thorns so you could wear a crown of glory. Thorns in Scripture represent sin. In Eden when Adam and Eve disobeyed, God said, “The ground will be under a curse … [… it] will produce thorns” (Genesis 3:17-18). Later He told Israel that unless they purged the land of their enemies, “they will be like … thorns in your sides” (Numbers 33:55). Solomon cautioned: “Corrupt people walk a thorny, treacherous road” (Proverbs 22:5). And Jesus warned, “You can detect them by the way they act, just as you can identify a tree by its fruit. You need never confuse grapevines with thorn bushes” (Matthew 7:16). The cross at Calvary was a reversal of the Edenic curse.

A well-known author writes: “The crown of thorns Jesus wore represented all our sins. As we were caught in the brambles of envy, anger, shame, discouragement, guilt, bitterness, and unforgiveness, so Jesus, who knew no sin, became ‘an atoning sacrifice for our sins’ (1 John 4:10). Not once did Christ use His supernatural powers for personal comfort. With just a word He could have transformed the hard earth into a soft bed … hurled the spit of His accusers back into their faces … and paralyzed the hand of the soldier who braided the thorns. But He didn’t. Instead, ‘He cancelled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to Christ’s cross’” (Colossians 2:14). And He did it with you in mind. Amazing!

Prayer

Father, I thank You for the gift of Your Son, Jesus, who You sent to take away the sins of the world! All honor and glory to Your Name! In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Stay encouraged!

Pastor Mike

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