Grace Protestant Reformed Church

Forgiven: Today With Me in Paradise

Date: PM
Text: Luke 23:43
Psalters: 175, 217, 274, 400
  1. The setting.
    1. Jesus was crucified between two evil-doers.
    2. The malefactor’s position was the worst possible: he is dying the cursed death.
    3. If we are to join this sinner in his request of Jesus, we first must join ourselves to him in his condemnation.
  2. The evil-doer’s request to be remembered implies that a sudden spiritual awakening took place within him.
    1. First, he awakened to his own condemnation and that it was from God (Luke 23:40).
      1. He acknowledged that His condemnation was just – a due reward for his deeds (Luke 23:41).
      2. This implies that he saw his own sin and he saw that he was without any excuses.
    2. Second, he awakened to who and what Jesus was (and is).
    3. Jesus introduces His promise with an affirmation of truth: “Verily…”
    4. The repentant evil-doer only had in mind a coming kingdom, Jesus assures him of something that very day.
      1. “Today” indicates it will be immediately realized, without postponement.
      2. The immediate prospect is to be present “with Me.”
      3. “Paradise” is heaven, the home of angels and deceased saints (II Cor. 12:4 with 2; Rev. 2:7 with 22:1-5).
    5. This crossword magnifies Jesus as Savior of repenting ones (focus on the Savior, not those repenting).