Comprehending Grace

Author: Jim Kirkpatrick
March 08, 2019

Two others also, who were criminals, were led away to be put to death with him.  When they came to the place that is called The Skull, they crucified Jesus there with the criminals, one on his right and one on his left.  Then Jesus said, "Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing." - Luke 23:32-34

GRACE: The ability to receive hurt from others and not pass it on.

If one fully comprehends this definition of "grace" then their relationships with God, friends and self will be great.

To gain such understanding consider Luke 23:32-34.  Jesus has spent three years teaching about God's grace by living a life of sacrifice and service, only to end up on the cross. Imagine the emotional strain of his last day.  It was spent working hard teaching; then a final farewell dinner with his most trusted friends; a time of pleading with his father for a change in plans (disappointed); being arrested, falsely accused and illegally tried during which he was spat upon and hit (degraded); more all night trials (exhausted); before the most fearsome power in the land was again tried, mocked and beaten to nearly the point of death (depressing); was led bleeding to the place of death having to carry a cross beam too heavy for a man in his condition to bear (powerless); nailed and hung up in the most painful way known (pain beyond our understanding); loved ones standing close by while those who caused his agony looked on with pride (defeated); and then Jesus wants to speak.  However, to speak he must rise up against the cross reopening the wounds on his back.  With great effort and extreme pain he chooses his words carefully in order to sum up his ministry.  And those words are, "father forgive them."

Most of us could never forgive so much so quickly, but Jesus did instantly.  Only through the help of the Holy Spirit can we be as forgiving.  Remember, "grace is the ability to receive hurt from others and not pass it on."


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