He Did Not Come Down–Part 3 of 3

MATTHEW 27:39-44, key vs. 40, 42
As we finish up this study on these three groups of people who were present at the crucifixion of Jesus and how they all wanted Him to come down from the cross, we look at the final group:


The first thing that we notice is that the Two were Critical 27:44. Matthew’s Gospel account clearly shows us that both of the thieves who were on the cross, suffering from the death penalty for their sins and transgressions against society, were critical and blasphemous when the process of the crucifixion started. Both of these men were just like the scribes and chief priest in that they were under conviction for their sin.

And when we go to Luke’s gospel account, we see that there are two ways to respond to conviction.

One thief was CallousedLuke 23:39. This thief was looking for what just about everyone else is looking for – some sort of temporal relief from their current situation. Many people come to church, or begin to pray, not because they seek  to worship a holy God and repent of their sin, but because they are expecting some magical genie to grant them their wish so they can go back to living their life they way they had before.

This thief was not seeking forgiveness of his sins, but just a pardoning from his punishment. He was bitter at his lot in life – though it was well deserved. Some people are so obstinate to their need of a saviour, even till the bitter end.

But we notice a change in the other thief, he was ConvictedLuke 23:40-43. This second thief shows us a couple of truths:
1. It is never too late to turn to Christ as long as you have breath.
2. When under conviction, we can choose to either get better or get bitter.
Too many people today are under conviction about their sin, yet too prideful, scared, or confused to turn to Christ.

We read both in Matthew 27:50 and Luke 23:46 HE DID NOT COME DOWN!

A great theologian of old Matthew Henry said in relation to this portion of Scripture - He {Jesus} was, at His death, numbered amongst the transgressors, that we, at our death, might be numbered among the saints.

We are all one of the thieves on one of the crosses because we are all sinners who deserve an eternity in Hell and the Lake of Fire. I am glad that in June of 1999 it was not too late for me and I called out to Jesus in repentance and faith and He saved my soul!

How about you? Which thief are you?

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