Today’s Reading: John 12:1-43
But we see him who for a little while was made lower than the angels, namely Jesus, crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone. (Hebrews 2:9)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Jesus was crowned with glory and honor, but it sure looks odd. The Cross with Jesus on it doesn’t look like glory and honor. Instead, it looks like there is a lot of shame and tragedy on the Cross. A crown of thorns doesn’t look like glory, and a man stripped naked doesn’t look like honor. No, it’s on the Cross that Jesus, God in the flesh, tastes death for everyone. Or to put it another way, God died on the Cross. Now, don’t start thinking that the Father died on the Cross, or that the Holy Spirit died on the Cross. They didn’t. But Jesus is fully God, and when Jesus died on the Cross, God died. That’s a big deal! He tasted death for everyone.
That means that Jesus tasted death for you. The death your sin deserves has been died by Jesus, God in the flesh. That’s not just true for you, though. It’s true for everyone. He tasted death for everyone, and there is no one who is outside of Jesus’ death and the mercy and grace that He has for sinners. That doesn’t mean that everyone is saved, because salvation is by grace through faith. Do you believe what Jesus has done for you and that He is your Lord and your God? That faith in Jesus that you have been given is the center of your life. Jesus is your only hope and your only Savior. Thanks be to God, He shows you His glory and honor from the Cross for your everlasting life.
It’s because of God’s grace that Jesus came into the flesh to die for you. You see His grace on the Cross. From there the forgiveness of all your sins was earned. Jesus delivers that forgiveness to you when you are baptized into His death and resurrection and when He feeds Christians His Body and Blood for the forgiveness of sins. God has poured out His grace on you, and He forgives you all your sins. You are pure and holy because of Jesus’ death for you. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
Almighty God, grant that in the midst of our failures and weaknesses we may be restored through the passion and intercession of Your only-begotten Son, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen. (Collect for Monday of Holy Week)
-Rev. Peter Ill is pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church in Millstadt, IL.
Audio Reflections Speaker: Rev. Duane Bamsch
Learn more about your favorite hymns and find the deeper meaning behind the text with Eternal Anthems: The Story Behind Your Favorite Hymns. The book includes devotional commentary and historical facts from forty different contributing authors on fifty different hymns. Now available from Concordia Publishing House.