Week 3: The Crowning with Thorns
Pilate asks, "Are You a king?" Jesus answers: "I am a King, but My kingdom is not of this world." The soldiers place an old purple robe on Jesus in mockery of His claim to be a king. They fashion a crown out of thorns, and forcefully press it down upon His head. In His bound hands they place a reed, as a scepter, in mockery of His kingship. Kneeling before Him in derision, they spit on Him, and cry out: "Hail, King of the Jews!" Taking the reed from His hand they strike Him on the head, driving the thorns more deeply into His scalp. Pilate brings Jesus before the people, hoping His pitiful sight will soften them: "Behold the man!" Their response: "Crucify Him! Crucify Him!" Jesus submitted to this terrible humiliation to make reparation for human pride.
As we pray these prayers this week, let us consider how this painful humiliation endured by Jesus shows the depth of God’s mercy on us and on the whole world.
· Day 11, Monday: Share Comfort
· Day 12, Tuesday: Gather Wisdom
· Day 13, Wednesday: Take Action
· Day 14, Thursday: Exalt God
· Day 15, Friday: Seek Instruction
· Day 16, Saturday: Surrender Fear
· 3rd Sunday in Lent
Focus Verse: Day 16 – Surrender Fear (Adapted from Psalm 27)
Lord, you are my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear. You are the defense of my life, whom shall I dread? When evildoers come upon me, they stumble and fall. Though a host encamps against me, my heart will not fear. Though war arises against me, in spite of this, I shall be confident. Only one thing do I ask of you, Lord, that I shall seek and dwell in Your house all the days of me life, to experience Your peace as I meditate in Your temple. For in the day of trouble, You will conceal me in Your sanctuary and hide me in Your secret place. You will lift me up on a rock so that my head will be lifted up above my enemies. I will offer my praise with shouts of joy. I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the Lord! Amen
As we consider the quiet courage of Christ as He submitted to the humiliation of mockery and false accusations, we focus on Psalm 27 describing David’s courage as he was surrounded by enemies. In both examples their total trust in God as their rock and salvation gave them the strength to endure.
Reflect on a time when you felt overwhelmed by a particular circumstance or surrounded by enemies. What was your reaction?
What do the prayers for this week tell you about the nature of man? What do they tell you about the nature of God?
What is your personal response to sharing comfort, gathering wisdom, and seeking instruction from God?
Can you identify barriers in your own life that prevent you from turning fearful situations into situations that exalt God?
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