The Bible tells us seven utterances of the Lord Jesus Christ while He was on the cross dying for our sins.  Each saying is rich with meaning and deserves our meditating upon them.  Luke 23:34 gives us the first thing our blessed savior said.  Let’s read Luke 23:33-34, ‘And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left. Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.”

I am immediately in awe of the love and grace of our Lord Jesus.  Throughout His life, the Lord had been hated and rejected, even though He came because of His deep love for us.

HE WAS HATED.  It was said prophetically of the Lord in Psalm 69:4, “They that hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of mine head: they that would destroy me, being mine enemies wrongfully, are mighty: then I restored that which I took not away.”  The Lord applied this verse to Himself when He said in John 15:25, “But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause.”

HE WAS REJECTED.  Luke 19:14 tells us, “But his citizens hated him, and sent a message after him, saying, We will not have this man to reign over us.”  Luke 4:29-30 tells us they, “…rose up, and thrust him out of the city, and led him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might cast him down headlong. But he passing through the midst of them went his way.”  Matthew 8:34 says, “And, behold, the whole city came out to meet Jesus: and when they saw him, they besought him that he would depart out of their coasts.”  Mark 15:13, “And they cried out again, Crucify him.”

HE WAS MOCKED AND BEATEN.   Mark 15:17-19, “And they clothed him with purple, and platted a crown of thorns, and put it about his head, And began to salute him, Hail, King of the Jews! And they smote him on the head with a reed, and did spit upon him, and bowing their knees worshipped him.”  John 19:1, “Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged him.”

YET, HE LOVED THEM.  As we read in Luke 23:34, “Then said Jesus, FATHER, FORGIVE THEM; for they know not what they do.”  He was praying for the very ones who hated, rejected, beat, and mocked Him.  AMAZING GRACE!  Although the Lord was treated so terribly, it did not affect the love that He had for those men.  He wanted to save them and give them eternal life.  Even to the point of death, the Lord prayed for those who treated Him so cruelly.  Did the Father answer His Son’s prayer?  He most certainly did!  We have the words of the Apostle Peter in Acts 2:36-38, “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ. Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”  The Lord offered forgiveness to ‘all the house of Israel’ even after they crucified Him.  AMAZING GRACE!

1 Timothy 1:15 tells us that, “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.”  The Lord’s intent in coming was to save lost sinners, like these men, like me and you.  Have you experienced God’s AMAZING GRACE?  Have you bowed your knee before Him and owned Him as Savior and Lord?  Romans 5:8 says, “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”  God loves you.  Christ died for you.  We read in Acts 16:30-31, “…what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.”  (208.6)