Weekly Devotionals - 3 April

Isaiah 53 is a prophecy about the Servant of the Lord who would atone for our sins by taking the punishment we deserve, so that we may be forgiven and spared of the consequences. On Good Friday, our Lord Jesus fulfilled this prophecy when He was persecuted for a crime He did not commit, bruised and wounded by beatings and scourging that He did not deserve, and pierced by thorns, nails, and a spear, though He had done no wrong. In fact, He died that day at the hands of evil men through a miscarriage of justice! It looked more like a bad Friday than a good one! In what way was that Friday a good Friday?

Good Friday is good because…
• Jesus endured the pain and shame of crucifixion, so we need not endure the agony and misery of judgement and hell, which we fully deserve because of our sin (Hebrews 9:27-28).
• Jesus was separated from His beloved Father so that we, who were formerly the enemies of God, may be reconciled to Him as His beloved children who will live with Him eternally (John 1:12, 3:16; Romans 5:8).
• The Son of God was stripped of all His clothes, and was made to hang naked on the cross, so that you and I may be clothed with righteousness and dignity as the sons and daughters of God (1 John 3:1-2).
• He who knew no sin became sin for us so that in Him we may become the righteousness of God (2 Corinthians 5:21).
• By being wounded for us on that Friday, today we can be healed of all kinds of diseases in Him (Matthew 8:17), whether physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual.
• By being nailed to the cross and made to lose His freedom, He has freed us from sin and sinful addictions so that we are free to live righteously for God (Romans 6:6-7, 18).
• By becoming a curse on the cross, He has broken the curse of sin for us and qualified us to become recipients of God’s promised blessings, and to be a blessing to others (Galatians 3:13-14).

So an out-of-the-world exchange took place at the cross, at Christ’s expense and in our favour! Jesus suffered pain, shame, rejection, and injustice so we may be forgiven, freed, made righteous, healed, blessed, and be a blessing to others! What a good and glorious Friday it was and continues to be!

This calls for a response of thanksgiving, worship, and consecration. Leading up to Friday this week:
• Be filled with thanksgiving and worship daily. Thank God for what Christ has done on Good Friday and for the blessings that have flowed to us as a result.
• Examine yourself and deal with the sins that you’re struggling with. Confess them to God and ask for forgiveness and cleansing (1 John 1:9). Repent of these sins (Ephesians 4:24-26) and rededicate yourself to live for God and His kingdom (Matthew 6:33).
• Come back to church on Good Friday for a time of thanksgiving and celebration, and bring a friend with you.

Monday: Isaiah 53:10-11
10 Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the Lord makes his life an offering for sin, he will see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand.  11 After he has suffered, he will see the light of life and be satisfied; by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many, and he will bear their iniquities.
Tuesday: John 3:16
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
Wednesday: Ephesians 1:7
In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace.
Thursday: 2 Corinthians 5:21
God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
Friday: Galatians 3:13-14
13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a pole.” 14 He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.
Saturday: Colossians 2:14-15
14 Having cancelled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. 15 And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.

Sunday: Romans 8:32
He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?

All scriptures are quoted from the New International Version (NIV) unless otherwise stated.
By Pastor Yong Tai Tong