44 It was now about noon. Then darkness covered the whole land until three o’clock. 45 The sun had stopped shining. The temple curtain was torn in two. 46 Jesus called out in a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my life.” After he said this, he took his last breath. 47 The Roman commander saw what had happened. He praised God and said, “Jesus was surely a man who did what was right.” 48 The people had gathered to watch this sight. When they saw what happened, they felt very sad. Then they went away. 49 But all those who knew Jesus stood not very far away, watching these things. They included the women who had followed him from Galilee.
Jesus died – he really died. It’s true. You can rely on it. Luke has been at pains to take Theophilus and also us through the account of Jesus’ life and he is coming to the pinnacle, Jesus’ death, burial, resurrection and ascension. Luke reminds us that we can rely on these facts – they are from eye-witnesses. The fact of Jesus’ death is presented to us and we have witnesses to testify to us that Jesus died. The centurion commented that that Jesus must have been righteous – to die in agony on a cross yet with grace, strength and humility, giving up His spirit when the time had come – the centurion realised something special had just taken place. The gathered people who had stood by were now beating their breasts which in those days was an act of abject grief – they realised now that Jesus really was the special One, the Messiah, the hope of the world, the saviour. Of course the women were there as well, if at a distance, watching.
And what of you and I what do we do with these facts. Do I run to Jesus as my Lord or run from Jesus as my judge – there is now no middle ground – we are either for or against Him – what He has done is not only the centre-point of time it is the centre-point of human existence. We can no longer sit on the fence, having a bet each way – maybe a win maybe a place – we need to decide. The facts are undeniable – it’s time to place our faith in Jesus as our Saviour and be obedient to Him as our Lord.
Father, I bow my knees afresh to you as my Saviour and Lord – I owe you all that I am, all that I hope to be. I give You my life, I dedicate myself to following You and doing all You want me to do and being all You want me to be.
Written by Ps. Richard Botta