Cross sculpture on campus



God is in Control

Lent 2022

Read John 19:28-42

28 After this, Jesus, knowing that all was now finished, said (to fulfill the Scripture), “I thirst.” 29 A jar full of sour wine stood there, so they put a sponge full of the sour wine on a hyssop branch and held it to his mouth. 30 When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.

31 Since it was the day of Preparation, and so that the bodies would not remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath was a high day), the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken and that they might be taken away. 32 So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who had been crucified with him. 33 But when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. 34 But one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water. 35 He who saw it has borne witness—his testimony is true, and he knows that he is telling the truth—that you also may believe. 36 For these things took place that the Scripture might be fulfilled: “Not one of his bones will be broken.” 37 And again another Scripture says, “They will look on him whom they have pierced.”

38 After these things Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, asked Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus, and Pilate gave him permission. So he came and took away his body. 39 Nicodemus also, who earlier had come to Jesus by night, came bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds in weight. 40 So they took the body of Jesus and bound it in linen cloths with the spices, as is the burial custom of the Jews. 41 Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb in which no one had yet been laid. 42 So because of the Jewish day of Preparation, since the tomb was close at hand, they laid Jesus there.

“He was crucified, died, and was buried.” These words have been confessed by Christians for hundreds upon hundreds of years. They reflect the gracious plan of God that put events in motion for thousands upon thousands of years, from the time sin entered into the world and we became slaves under our sinful condition. Even the smallest of details, going mostly unnoticed by those at the cross, point to God’s intervention and plan.

“I thirst.” This was spoken to fulfill all Scripture.

“They did not break his legs.” This took place to fulfill all Scripture.

“One of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear.” This took place to fulfill all Scripture.

If ever we doubt who is, and always has been, in control of our salvation we can look to the details of the cross. Even at the moment of death itself, we are reminded of all the times that men tried to take Jesus’ life unsuccessfully because the timing was not according to God’s plan.

Here Jesus himself says, “It is finished,” and he gives up his spirit. No one takes his life; he voluntarily lays it down for us. Because Jesus was in full control, even at the point of death, we can be assured of his promises that he would give up his life only to take it up again. We can trust when Jesus said, “If the Son sets you free, you are free indeed.” We can trust him when he says, “you are clean.”

Prayer: Almighty God, you have always held all things in your control. Anchor my faith to your Son and his cross, that I may always be reminded of your divine wisdom and mercy and may be held firmly in your grace whenever things in this life seem to give way or fall apart. Amen.

Holy Week Icons

President Dr. Michael Thomas guides us through three important religious images that will enhance your experience of Holy Week.

Walk With Us

Sign up to receive daily devotions from Ash Wednesday through Easter directly to your email.
Your email address will be used for no other purposes than these Lenten devotions.

Back to top