Fast from non-essential spending
Under the conviction of Your Spirit I learn that the more I do, the worse I am, the more I know, the less I know, the more holiness I have, the more sinful I am, the more I love, the more there is to love. I am wretched! Oh Lord, I have a rebellious heart, and cannot stand before You; I am like a grasshopper before a man. How little I love Your truth and ways! I neglect prayer, because I think that I have prayed enough, and that You have already saved me. Of all hypocrites, help me that I may not be an evangelical hypocrite, who sins more “safely” because grace abounds, who tolerates the evil desires of my heart, who loves evangelical preaching, churches, Christians, but lives in a way that does not reflect You and is unholy. My mind is a bucket without a bottom, with no spiritual understanding, no desire for the Lord’s Day, ever learning but never reaching the truth, always at the gospel-well but never holding water. My conscience is without conviction or repentance, and I fool myself into thinking I have nothing to confess. My will is lacking power of decision or resolution. My heart is without affection, and full of leaks. My memory has no retention, so I easily forget the lessons learned, and Your truths leak away. Give me a broken heart that still carries home the water of grace. PRAYER FROM “THE VALLEY OF VISION”
And he came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him. And when he came to the place, he said to them, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.” And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed, saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.” And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him. And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground. And when he rose from prayer, he came to the disciples and found them sleeping for sorrow, and he said to them, “Why are you sleeping? Rise and pray that you may not enter into temptation.” Luke 22:39-46
In the final hours leading up to Jesus' death, which we commemorate today as Good Friday, Jesus' journey on earth became treacherous and painful. Judas, who betrayed Him, was filled with remorse and hung himself on Friday morning. Meanwhile, Jesus faced the disgrace of false accusations, condemnation, humiliation, whippings, and rejection, eventually being unjustly sentenced to death by crucifixion—one of the most painful methods of execution. Soldiers spit on Christ, tortured and humiliated him, and wounded him with a crown of thorns before leading him away. Before Roman soldiers would nail Jesus to the wooden cross, they made Him carry it toward Calvary where he was further humiliated and insulted. In Luke 23 the full account of His death begins in verse 26 with Jesus on the cross. At the ninth hour—3:00 p.m.—Jesus took His final breath.
Two Jewish leaders, Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, at great risk to themselves prepared Jesus’ body for burial and laid it in Joseph’s own tomb before the beginning of Sabbath.
Jesus Christ paid the penalty for sin by offering Himself as a faultless, spotless sacrifice. He physically and spiritually defeated death, ensuring our eternal salvation: 1 Peter 1:18-19, “For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.”