Daily Devotion for Lent | Friday, March 16, 2018

Read Mark 15:16-20.

And they clothed Him in a purple cloak, and twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on Him. And they began to salute Him, “Hail, King of the Jews!” (Mark 15:17-18)

crown of thorns golden crown dress upWhen you were little, did you ever play dress-up with your parents’ clothes? Perhaps you tried on mom’s shoes, or dad’s tie. Perhaps it was an older brother’s graduation cap or a sister’s wedding veil. Children love to play-act—and parents love to take pictures of them!

But on this day, it was no child playing dress-up. It was several hundred Roman soldiers playing a brutal game of “king” with Jesus. Beaten and half-dead as He was, they still thought it great fun to dress Him in mock royal robes. Here a reddish-purple cloak, maybe borrowed from a lazy soldier who hadn’t put his gear away properly; here a reed for a scepter. And for a golden crown—why not a crown of thorns?

And they mocked Him and bowed down to Him and hailed Him as king. They grabbed the fake scepter out of His hand and beat Him over the head with it. None of them realized they had the real King in their hands—the King of the Jews, the King of heaven and earth. None of them realized He had angel armies at His command if He chose to use them. None of them realized that the dress-up was real.

But of course it was. And they—and we!—will all stand together before Jesus’ throne in the end, when He returns in glory. But then the worship will be real, not a mockery. It will be love, not hatred, and joy, not terror. Because the King that human beings dressed up and abused that day is in fact our Savior Jesus, God Himself, come to reclaim us from the power of evil. He has taken our place in death and the grave so that we might take the place He freely offers us, as children of God. He forgives and welcomes us as His own. And now that He has risen from the dead, He dresses us up in His own holy, kingly clothes—children of the Lord.

THE PRAYER: My King and my Savior, I love You. Thank You for everything You have borne to save us. Amen.

Brought to you in partnership with Lutheran Hour Ministrieslhm.org/lent

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About These Devos

SILENT WITNESSES Lenten Devotions 2018

For Christians, the season of Lent is marked by deep reflection on the appearance of the Savior and, naturally, what His life, suffering, death, and resurrection mean for our lives now. God’s human involvement in our world is a perfect example of His intimate love for us. He spared nothing to make Himself known to us—a fact that proclaims in no uncertain terms how “God so loved the world.” In Silent Witnesses, readers will note both the majestic—and mundane—aspects of the Gospel accounts: stories telling how God in His infinite power came down and “has spoken to us by His Son.”

Lutheran Hour Ministries (LHM) is a Christian outreach ministry supporting churches worldwide in its mission of Bringing Christ to the Nations—and the Nations to the Church.

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