Luke 23:28 - ... Jesus said, "Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for Me, but weep for yourselves and for your children."
As Jesus walks to the place where He will be crucified, a large crowd is following Him. Some of them are women who are grieving and weeping for Him. Jesus turns to speak to them.
That in itself is surprising. Jesus has already been scourged, and He is now so weak that the soldiers have had to draft another man to carry His cross for Him. In a few minutes Jesus will be nailed to the cross. If there is ever a time for Jesus to think of Himself, surely it is now.
And yet He doesn't. He is thinking of the women who are weeping. And He says to them, "Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for Me, but weep for yourselves and for your children." He warns them that terrible days are coming. In just a few years, the Roman army will come and destroy Jerusalem, and her people will starve and be slaughtered. "For if they do these things when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?" In other words, if human beings are willing to murder the incarnate Son of God while He is living on earth, what worse things will they do in the future when He has returned to heaven?
I wonder how many of the women recalled His words when the siege of Jerusalem started. I hope some took warning and left the city while they still could. There is a tradition that says that before the end, the Christians of Jerusalem left the city to find safety elsewhere. Perhaps some of these women were among them.
Jesus gave them a chance of safety, for themselves and their children. And yet He did far more than that, just hours after this conversation. Because when He died on that cross, Jesus made Himself our place of safety—the One who protects us from the power of death, the devil, and all evil. He made Himself our fortress, our protection. When we are in trouble, we can flee to Him for help. He will never fail us. He will never leave us alone.
THE PRAYER: Thank You, Lord, for becoming our place of safety. Amen.
Where is the place you feel the safest?
What person in your life makes you feel the safest (besides Jesus)?
How can you help someone else find safety through what you do or say in the Name of Jesus?
Lenten Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo.
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