Exodus 20:15, Luke 23:42-43
Have you ever stolen anything before?
I remember when I was a kid, about six or seven years old, a friend of mine that lived down the street showed me the latest toy that he had found in a Happy Meal and I wanted it.
Next time I was over at his house I actually took the toy off the shelf and put it in my pocket. I brought it home. The boy never found out that I took the toy, he thought he lost it, my parents and family members never knew that I had it either.
The first time I pulled it out I was excited and played with it, but then the guilt got to me. Eventually I brought the toy back and put it in its place and even though nobody ever knew that I had stolen a toy I knew and I felt guilty for what I had done, even years afterwards.
In Exodus chapter 20 verse 15 God says
You shall not steal. —Exodus 20:15
He commands us do not take that which is not yours, even if the person has plenty. It’s still wrong to steal.
In the Bible we hear a story about a man who had stolen his entire life. In fact he stole so much that he deserved to die. The government decided to execute him in the common fashion of the day, crucifixion.
As he was hanging there dying he was next to a man that we know very well: Jesus. And he paid attention very closely to what he said
“Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” —Luke 23:34
He paid close attention to what the crowds were saying and the sign above his head Jesus of Nazareth King of the Jews.
And as he was on that cross that thief believed that Jesus was the Messiah, the savior of the world. And so he asked him
Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” —Luke 23:42
Jesus spoke these words to that thief on the cross
I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise. —Luke 23:43
He had forgiven the man who had stolen so much and guaranteed him that he was going to heaven, even though he didn’t deserve it. Going to heaven because Jesus would pay the price for his sin, his sin of stealing.
What incredible relief this is for our guilty conscience is to know that even those sins are forgiven in Jesus.
Turn to Him trust in him and know his forgiveness and love. Amen.