And he was saying, “Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” And He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.” Luke 23:42-43.
Today your LORD (יהוה) God (אלהים) says:
When My Son was at the home of Lazarus, Mary, and Martha, Mary sat at the feet of My Son like a disciple and listened to His Words of life while Martha stayed busy about hospitality in the kitchen. She became offended at Mary and Jesus that her sister was not helping her in the kitchen to prepare a meal. She stopped Jesus’ teaching and demanded He send Mary to go help her. My Son gently corrected her by saying, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things; but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:41-42.
Spending time with Me. Being with Me. Fellowship with Me. Growing in the revelation of My Word with Me. This is really the good part, the best part, of life now and for eternity. Life does not have anything better to offer than that, and I mean in such an overwhelming and blessed sense. I know everything, with Me there are no questions, only answers, no problems, only solutions, no anxiety, only rest, no lack, only abundance, no fear, only blessed assurance, and so much more. I am El Shaddai, I am more than enough to meet every one of your needs in overflowing measure. I made everything for you to richly enjoy, but primarily for us to enjoy it together.
I made such beautiful and precious things for you, but they are so much better when shared with the One who loves you, made you, and understands you to your deepest core. When you share with Me you fill your life with love and light. And love produces joy. Come share My joy!
You will make known to me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; in Your right hand there are pleasures forever. Psalm 16:11.
My Kingdom is filled with love, light, and joy! It is a Kingdom of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit and that is the continuous flow there. And you can get in that flow even now and have days of Heaven on earth. But Heaven is Heaven because I am there and set the atmosphere as well as the provision, protection, and direction that is there for all.
But as for me, the nearness of God is my good; I have made the Lord (Adonai) LORD (Yahweh) my refuge, that I may tell of all Your works. Psalm 73:28.
And it is the same on earth, you can only live in the atmosphere of Heaven if I am there, for love is its atmosphere and I am love. Without Me there is no true love and there is no true joy. For love and joy to be true they must be eternal.
And the ransomed of the LORD will return and come with joyful shouting to Zion, With everlasting joy upon their heads. They will find gladness and joy, and sorrow and sighing will flee away. Isaiah 35:10.
Jesus defined eternal life as knowing Me, the One true God, and knowing the One whom I sent, Jesus Christ. John 17:3. And the third time Jesus spoke on the Cross is about the good part, the best part, that a criminal found in sharing fellowship with My Son in his last hours before he would face judgment. He found the one thing necessary, and it opened Paradise to him though personally he had no good works of his own. But the priests of the Old Covenant did not examine the sinner, they examined the lamb. And he had found the perfect Lamb by watching Him and listening to His Words. He had examined the Lamb. And he found nothing wrong in Him at all and knew he had found the right One to bring before Me. His heart at last found the love he had looked for all his life.
Remember, O LORD, Your compassion and Your lovingkindnesses, for they have been from of old. Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions; according to Your lovingkindness remember me, for Your goodness’ sake, O LORD. Psalm 25:6-7.
As He hung on the Cross no fellowship was going on between the majority of the bystanders and Jesus. Far from it. Ridicule, scorn, and demands to prove Himself the Messiah are not fellowship, and yet that is the way many pray, “If you are really who you say you are, if you are really good, heal me!” is the way some address Me. Or, “If you are a good God why did you let this happen? Do something!” I cannot help you if you pray like this. Even Gideon prayed like that when I first came to fellowship with him in his trials, “Then Gideon said to him, “O my Lord, if the LORD is with us, why then has all this happened to us? And where are all His miracles which our fathers told us about, saying, ‘Did not the LORD bring us up from Egypt?’ But now the LORD has abandoned us and given us into the hand of Midian.” Judges 6:13.
My answer to Gideon was simple. I told him that he was to go and take down the Midians, and I told him how he would have success in doing it, I would be with him to make it happen. Miracles always involve you authorizing Me to work on the earth with you by faith. The great miracles he was bringing up I did with Moses. You have dominion authority and I do not. I own the earth and the power resides in Me, but you still have the leasehold.
Please understand that faith works by love and if you are accusing and railing against Me, there is no love there so your faith is not working. And without faith it is impossible to receive anything from Me. But all things are possible for those who believe.
Also, I would remind you that when I came to answer his prayers, Gideon was worshipping idols, his father had built an altar to Baal in their yard. You cannot serve two masters and expect to receive from Me. You are on enemy territory and open to his attacks in that case. The first thing I had him do was tear down Baal’s altar and build one to Me on top of it.
And once Gideon had spent time in fellowship with Me, he and I did take down Midian to the last man and freed Israel from oppression. He got to know Me and that was all it took for the impossible to become possible.
So the chief priests, the scribes and the elders led the crowd present in addressing Jesus with ridicule and humiliation asking Him to vindicate Himself and prove His Words were true. Jesus did not respond at all. He is the truth and no matter what He said He knew it would not change them. The priests had examined the Lamb before the Sanhedrin and found no fault in Him. They had to get two people to give false testimony but even that did not agree. They could not find one witness, let alone two, that had any credibility to show a fault in Him. They finally convicted Him of saying He was My Son and the Messiah. Which was the absolute truth. But please note, that as under the Old Covenant, Jesus, the Lamb of sacrifice, was examined by the priests the night He was betrayed and no fault could be found in Him.
As Jesus hung on the Cross, for any one knowing Scripture, they watched the written Word become a living Word as those who passed by, many of them Romans and unbelievers that did not know My written Word, hurled abuse at Him, wagging their heads and saying, “You who are going to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save Yourself! If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross.” And in the same way the chief priests also, along with the scribes and elders, were mocking Him and saying, “He saved others; He cannot save Himself. He is the King of Israel; let Him now come down from the cross, and we will believe in Him. He trusts in God; let God rescue Him now, if He [t]delights in Him; for He said, ‘I am the Son of God.’”
Let us turn to David’s prophetic song, for once My Spirit rushed on David when he was anointed king, My Spirit never left him.
But I am a worm and not a man, a reproach of men and despised by the people. All who see me sneer at me; they separate with the lip, they wag the head, saying, “Commit yourself to the LORD; let Him deliver him; let Him rescue him, because He delights in him.” Psalm 22:6-8.
Be not far from me, for trouble is near; for there is none to help. Many bulls have surrounded me; strong bulls of Bashan have encircled me. They open wide their mouth at me, as a ravening and a roaring lion. Psalm 22:
And at first both the criminals who had been crucified with Him were also insulting Him with the same words, hoping to gain some favor with the ones in charge and trying to deflect any insults or accusations for the crimes they had done onto Jesus like a scapegoat. And one of the criminals did have a heart that was hard and resentful to Me, blaming Me for his dire situation even though he had lived completely contrary to My Word. But before the sixth hour, when darkness fell on the land until the ninth hour, one of the two criminals, who had kept his eyes on Jesus from the judgment rendered by Pilate, who declared Him innocent and not deserving of death, throughout the walk to Golgotha, and heard His prayer for forgiveness for those crucifying and taunting Him and he had a change of heart, his cold dead heart began to fame into flame. I have put eternity in each man’s heart and deep calls unto deep. And he felt the call.
He looked to the gentle humble one next to Him who had done nothing wrong and yet was so patiently bearing the attack all around HIm and he remembered Scriptures about the suffering servant, the Messiah, that he had learned in his youth. And he knew Jesus had a following of those believing Him to be the promised Messiah. And moved to his deepest core, he listened to another taunt from the other criminal against Jesus, Are You not the Messiah? Save Yourself and us!” and something in him stood up and said “enough.” He turned his head as best he could and rebuked him, saying, “Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.”
Repentance had entered his heart, and not only repentance but a desire to save his fellow criminal as well. He took full responsibility for what he had done and where he was. And he went further. He judged Jesus innocent, blameless, and beyond reproach. And he humbly entered into conversation with Jesus, the perfect gentle Lamb at his side, and said, “Jesus, remember me when You come into Your Kingdom!” He thereby declared the resurrection and the Kingship of Jesus. He had passed from death to life.
He believed I would raise Jesus from the dead and that He was a King, the Lord. All he knew at that point was that he wanted to be with this gentle humble savior forever who did not return insults with insults but only with forgiveness.
But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. Romans 10:8-10.
And Jesus looked and saw a contrite, humbled, repentant heart, which I never spurn, but He saw something else too, He saw love in that criminal’s heart, love for Him and love for the other criminal in trying to save him as well. I know those who love Me and they are born of Me.
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. 1 John 4:7.
But the one who loves God is known by God. 1 Corinthians 8:3.
And Jesus entered into that invitation through the open door of the criminal’s heart to fellowship with him, Jesus turned His head to meet his gaze and said, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.” And at that moment the criminal saw the flame of love, pure love for him in those gentle eyes.
This criminal on the cross is the only one in the entire Bible that received a promise by oath of entering Paradise with Jesus right at his death. And yet what good had he ever done? Only one act at the very end of his life when he could not even go back and get a second chance to live the life of good deeds that had been My plan for his life.
I look at your heart. But I am looking for something very specific. Yes, it is Love. But not worldly love. I am looking for My image in you, for I AM Love, and until your heart becomes filled with nothing but that same pure love, you are not ready for the Kingdom, no matter how many good works, like Martha, you have done. There is a better part.
Many of you have many regrets over your past and even your present feeling you have failed Me in not doing the many great deeds and good works you dreamed of doing, but I want to remind you again that the greatest promise ever made to anyone by oath in the Bible was made to a man who acknowledged he had blown his whole life away and who deserved the horrible punishment he was receiving. But this sinful man saw the heart of Him who loved him and gave His life for him next to him and in the last hours of that criminal’s life, his heart became one of pure love, love of neighbor as he tried to make the blaspheming criminal on the cross to the other side of Jesus repent, and perfect love of God when he showed his new found faith that the long awaited Messiah who came to take away your sins and bring a Kingdom to earth hung next to him.
In humility, unlike the other criminal who tested Me and demanded deliverance as if due him, this criminal stepped into the spotlight as he fearlessly showed his faith in the face of the elders, priests, and leaders of the day mocking Jesus as Jesus hung there dying in perfect fulfillment of the words of David, Psalm 22 (which Jesus began reciting on the Cross), and Isaiah the prophet, Isaiah 53, spoken so many years before it took place in exact detail. And faith speaks, Acts 4:13, and so the criminal on the cross next to Jesus spoke the words that received the most extraordinary and comforting answer ever spoken.
Do you still not believe in My love for you?
I love you. Be comforted by that and live on in My love. You, unlike the criminal on the Cross, still have the chance to live the life of good deeds I prepared for you. And that is My gift to you. Cherish it, live it, and love it. Do not wait to the hour of your death to find your true Love. If you seek Me you will find Me right there with you.