A KING’S Heart

A KING’S Heart

Jesus answered him,”Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.”

LUKE 23:43

A king certainly has alot on his mind. But what does he have on his heart?

A king, especially anabsolute king, has to make the hard decisions. So what is true? What isactually right? What is going to happen? When? Where? To whom? A great momentin the history of kings, according to Shakespeare’s histories, was the nightbefore the battle of Agincourt. The future teetered on a cliff against horribleodds. King Henry V, with so much on his mind and heart, went out from his royal tent and walked veiled among the troops.

Henry mingled with the fires and fears of the people. It was not deadly for Henry as it was for Jesus,but that earthly king understood: “Upon the king!-let us our lives, oursouls, / Our debts… and / our sins lay on the king!” (Hewry V4:1)

So true for the Absolute Monarch hanging on that cross outside Jerusalem! So much everything!—is on him.He has incredible resources to allocate: all wealth and power to take andredistribute, threats and dangers to assess, intelligence to process from the deepest part of every heart, legions of angels to move into formation. In hiskingdom every life is his to give or to take.

So much on the King’s mind, but what is on his heart? That’s what one of Calvary’s criminals wanted to know. What will you do with a person the authorities want, with good reason,to put away or get rid of forever? Will you remember me? When? Where? And what will you remember?

What made the criminal so bold? He had seen something of the King’s heart, as Jesus was nailed and lifted on the cross. So now what? When? Where?

“Truly I tell you”-only an absolute king could say such a thing.

“Today”-Only aking could command such a thing. “You will be with me”-Only this Kingwould do such a thing.

“In paradise”- Ah, will all that is wrong and violent really be gone? Not if,not when, but now!

Jesus on the cross told the criminal and us exactly what was on the King’s heart and within his power.


Dear crucified King, help us to see your heart, marvel at your power, and hold close the paradiseyou gave us on Calvary. Amen.