Paradise | Devotion #4: Our Free Gift
Larry Gabbara | Financial Bookkeeper
“And he said to him, ‘Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise.’” Luke 23 :43
Jesus showed the world that all we need to do is ask and accept our free gift of salvation. Even the thief on the cross was given this wonderful gift. He was not saved until the last hours of his life. He did not have an opportunity to be baptized, receive the Lord’s Supper, attended church, or perform any good works. We assume that he did not live a righteous life. He was a criminal, sentenced to death.
Luke 23:42 says, “And he said, ‘Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.’”
Jesus loves us all no matter who we are, or what we have done. We just have to believe in our heart that Jesus is Lord and ask for our sins to be forgiven. Just ask for this free gift. The Lord has an abundance of mercy and grace for us. His love is limitless.
It is natural that while on Earth we all want comfort and assurance about life after death. It is so simple to have eternal life. We do not need to DO anything. We cannot earn it or work for it. Just ask for it. The Lord offers forgiveness to us all through His Son’s death. Jesus paid it all. Salvation is the free gift!
Many denominations teach and believe that our salvation, or the way to Heaven, is through works here on Earth. This is not true! Jesus offers us the free gift by just asking for it. The thief proves it; he realized he was a sinner in need of a Savior and asked Jesus to save him.
God sent His one and only Son to Earth to live a human life, like us. Jesus suffered and died for us. It was the greatest sacrifice of all time. The Father’s love is so immense that He sent His Son as a sacrifice to show His love for all mankind.
Romans 6:23 adds, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Just like the thief on the cross, Jesus offers us freedom and the gift of grace just for the asking!
The thief’s only responsibility and ours is to receive this amazing gift. We are saved by believing in Jesus and asking for our sins to be forgiven.
John 1:12 says, “But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.”
Faith is what makes this free gift attainable, and that is what was offered to the thief and to us. It is so amazing; through faith we can be saved from our sins.
The gift of grace saves sinners like you and me. Because of grace, the thief who was on the cross next to Jesus will spend eternity in Heaven! God wants to spend eternity with each and every one of us. He is waiting for us to ask for the gift of salvation.
John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”