Unlimited: You Can Steal Paradise!

Jan 3, 2017 963

You will be with Me in Paradise (Luke 23:43).

The Bible records only one deathbed repentance: only one, so no one would despair, but only one, so no one would presume. Who could imagine in a thousand years a better way of illustrating Christ’s Gospel: grace and love triumphs over sin and death in the face of true repentance. This man with blood on his hands, who had nourished hatred and violence in his heart, is transformed by the magnetic appeal of the One suffering in his stead. Now this thief makes the biggest “steal” of his life – Paradise! And the Owner of Paradise rejoices to let him do it!

In his rebuke of his brother thief, he includes himself as guilty and deserving of death, yet in his appeal to Christ he takes hold of life beyond the Cross.

Why is he saved rather than the very religious Pharisees and the philosophic Sadducees? Because he has a sense of need and an awareness of his true lost estate. Even the Son of God cannot save one who has no awareness of need. The greatest blessing in the world for the unconverted, is not wealth or talent or position, but the sense of one’s true estate:  one’s guilt before God and an inability to deal with it. This the thief had, and consequently, Paradise was his. – Des Ford

Eli’s Reflection: Have you ever prayed the prayer, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom”? Pray it today. Then read again Christ’s words of assurance to the dying thief in Luke 23:43. Even though you might not be in paradise with Jesus today, in your prayer, claim His promise for your own this very day.

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