The Holy Week Devotions Day 7

Apr 7, 2023 | by Rob Birks

“People of The Passion: Who were they? Who are we?”

So much has been written about the days of Jesus, just before he returned to be with the Father. At some level it’s hard to imagine another collection of devotions will add anything to the passion story. However, every time we approach the written word of God, we can expect His Spirit to guide us, instruct us, convict us, teach us, and give us hope, just to name a few benefits. Our prayer, as you walk the walk of Holy Week, this year, is that through the interactions between Jesus and OTHERS, you will see both His self and yourself more clearly, so that His life, death and resurrection come alive to you again (or, maybe, for the first time). Lord bless!

– Majors Rob & Stacy Birks (San Diego Kroc Center Administrators/Pastors)

Friday April 7 (Good Friday)                                                              Matthew 27:32-44

The Robbers

Two robbers were crucified with him, one on his right and one on his left. (v. 38 NIV)

And why did it have to be
A heavy cross He was made to bare
And why did they nail His feet and hands
His love would have held Him there

It was a cross for on a cross
A thief was supposed to pay
And Jesus had come into the world
To steal every heart away


Songwriter/Author Michael Card asked some hard Good Friday questions in 1984. And he made an earthly perspective disciple’s attempt at answering them. Why was Jesus placed between two thieves – also dying a criminal’s death on a cross? Because Jesus’ reason for living here, dying here and rising again here is to steal our hearts away. Is that a Theological answer? Not really, no. It’s poetical, though. It’s sincere. It’s born out of a heart that has been stolen by his Savior.

When I was younger, I couldn’t get my head around the name of the day on which we observe the violent, unjust death of peaceful Jesus. I understood that it was a Friday. Check. But “Good?” Good Friday? What about Evil Friday or Graphic Violence Friday or Terrible Friday or Unimaginably Cruel Friday? Any of those names – and more that are coming to mind, as I type – would better describe the horror of it all. The one who had come as a child, healed the hurting, set people free, performed miracles and turned the world upside-down, by teaching the Father heart of God was murdered. It wasn’t really an evil regime that did the dirty deed, either. The officials involved wanted nothing to do with it, really. But they had constituents and those people had an agenda, which didn’t include a blasphemous interloper – messing with their rigged system.


When I think too intently about this subject, (now, in fact) I still bristle at the Good of the Friday. However, I can begin to understand the truth of it, I think, when I consider my own untruthfulness, my own criminality – my own larceny – my own thievery – and follow those thoughts up by remembering who paid for all of it. Thank you, Jesus, for stealing my heart away. That was Good of you.

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