Proclaim. Mobilize. Equip.
Call 866-865-6253

Long Before We Pray to Him

May 7, 2019

“Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” Luke 23:34 (NIV)

Had anyone ever prayed for these men? It is possible that not a single prayer had ever been said for even one of these Roman soldiers at any time in their lives. But Christ prayed for them. And Christ prays for you too when nobody else will.

They needed this prayer because ignorance of the law is no defense against breaking it. If you break the speed limit and get pulled over, telling the police officer, “But I didn’t see the sign,” does not automatically free you from the constraints of the law.

Christ does not say, “Father, forget it, because they do not know what they are doing,” he says, “Father, forgive them.” He makes it clear that they must be forgiven, even though they do not know what they are doing.

Christ prays for their forgiveness before they have any interest in being forgiven. They feel no need of forgiveness. As a matter of fact, they are not repentant, nor do they have faith. Did you know that Christ’s love is not a response to your turning?

These men are on a path to hell, and they’re so dead in their sins that they do not even know what they are doing, but Christ prays for them. And Christ prays for us long before we ever pray to him.

What does it mean to you to know that Jesus prayed for you long before you ever prayed to him?


The Author
Colin Smith

Colin Smith is the Senior Pastor of The Orchard Evangelical Free Church in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. He has authored a number of books, including Heaven, How I Got Here and Heaven, So Near - So Far. Colin is the President and Teacher for Unlocking the Bible. Follow him on Twitter.



Explore this topic further

What Life in the Holy Spirit Looks Like

Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, NIV Here are some distinguishing marks of a spirit-filled life—joy, prayer, and thanksgiving. Notice Paul has already been speaking about love: “Hold them in the highest regard...

Read Post

When You Belong to the Darkness

While people are saying “Peace and safety,” destruction will come on them suddenly. 1 Thessalonians 5:3, NIV Paul gives us a picture of what it is like when you belong to the darkness. You feel secure “People are saying ‘peace and safety’” (5:3). You know you aren’t following Christ, you aren’t...

Read Post

Tools for Discernment

We urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone. 1 Thessalonians 5:14, NIV Discernment isn’t easy, but God has given us two gifts that can help us. The impulse of the Spirit Thank God for the gift of the Spirit....

Read Post
For your gift of any amount

Stay Salt

The World Has Changed: Our Message Must Not

Get Unlocking the Bible's Weekly Email

"This Week at Unlocking the Bible" features new articles, radio programs, devotionals, and ministry updates

We will never sell or misuse your information.

Share Your Story and Prayer Requests

If you have a testimony or story you would like to share or if you have a prayer request, please use the form below. If you would like someone from our staff to call you, please include your phone number.

We will never sell or misuse your information.

Get Unlocking the Bible’s Weekly Email

“This Week at Unlocking the Bible” features new articles, radio programs, devotionals, and ministry updates

We will never sell or misuse your information.

 

 

Order now