40 Days to the Cross: A Devotional for Lent
Confession: Psalm 38:6–9
I am bowed down; I am bent over greatly.
All the day I go about mourning.
For my loins are full of burning,
and there is no soundness in my flesh.
I am faint and crushed greatly;
I groan because of the roaring of my heart.
O Lord, all my longing is before you,
and my sighing is not hidden from you.
Reading: Mark 12:1–12
And he began to speak to them in parables: “A man planted a vineyard, and put a fence around it, and dug a trough for the winepress, and built a watchtower, and leased it to tenant farmers, and went on a journey. And he sent a slave to the tenant farmers at the proper time, so that he could collect some of the fruit of the vineyard from the tenant farmers. And they seized him and beat him and sent him away empty-handed. And again he sent to them another slave, and that one they struck on the head and dishonored. And he sent another, and that one they killed. And he sent many others, some of whom they beat and some of whom they killed. He had one more, a beloved son. Last of all he sent him to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ But those tenant farmers said to one another, ‘This is the heir. Come, let us kill him and the inheritance will be ours!’ And they seized and killed him and threw him out of the vineyard. What will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and destroy the tenant farmers and give the vineyard to others. Have you not read this scripture:
‘The stone which the builders rejected,
this has become the cornerstone.
This came about from the Lord,
and it is marvelous in our eyes’?”
And they were seeking to arrest him, and they were afraid of the crowd, because they knew that he had told the parable with reference to them. And they left him and went away.
The very medicine that we don’t like is the medicine that we ought to have, and the very truths that men object to, and that make them angry, are the truths that bring them to the cross of Christ. What we want is to preach Christ in season and out of season—
“Tell the old, old story
Of unseen things above,
Of Jesus and His glory,
Of Jesus and His love.”
Why, the stone that the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone. The very stone that they would not have was the very stone that God chose, and upon this stone He is building His Church now—upon the Rock of Ages. It is Christ, yes, Christ that men want, and then they will get sure food for eternity.
—DWIGHT L. MOODY
MEDICINE FOR THE SOUL
Is there a time in your life when you found it convenient to reject Jesus? Perhaps you thought you could repent later. What brought you back to the gospel?