For the longest time, those words Christ uttered with his body pinioned to the cross didn’t make sense to me.
“Father, forgive them.”
I didn’t want the witnesses to be forgiven. They didn’t deserve it. As they hurled insults at him, making a mockery of my God, he suffered the unthinkable.
Why would he say such a thing?
I would have much preferred him to say something like, “Father, punish them,” or “Father, condemn them.”
But no. In a moment where everyone he loved had abandoned him, including his own Father, he sent up a plea for forgiveness. He longed for the unrighteous to be made righteous through his suffering.
He turns the attention of history’s greatest love story from his agony to our need.
I just didn’t understand it. And because I didn’t get it, I failed to see my own need to extend forgiveness as well.
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