What Jesus Did! 'Remember Me!' — Luke 23:39-43

Friday, December 22, 2023

One of the criminals hanging beside [Jesus] scoffed, "So you're the Messiah, are you? Prove it by saving yourself — and us, too, while you're at it!"

But the other criminal protested, "Don't you fear God even when you have been sentenced to die? We deserve to die for our crimes, but this man hasn't done anything wrong." Then he said, "Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom."

And Jesus replied, "I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise."

— Luke 23:39-43 NLT

Key Thought

As Jesus and his disciples had shared in the Last Supper, Jesus had told his disciples to remember him. [1] So, for two thousand years, Christians throughout the world take the bread and fruit of the vine during the Lord's Supper and remember Jesus' life, death, and resurrection. Ironically, even while one of the criminals was dying on a cross near Jesus, he confessed Jesus' innocence and then asked Jesus to "remember me." So in the horror of his own crucifixion, Jesus offered this dying man a special moment of grace. Jesus reassured the dying criminal that he would share paradise with him. Jesus would remember him! Jesus is faithful, and he would not forget this man's request. Jesus will also remember our confessions of faith, our deeds of kindness done in his name, and our faithfulness to the Father. "Remember me!" we cry out to the Lord; thankfully, we already know he will!

[1] Luke 22:19.

Today's Prayer

Father, never ever let me outlive my faith in Jesus and my hope that is stirred every time I remember what he has done for me. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Luke 12:8
  • 2 Timothy 2:8-13
  • Hebrews 6:10


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Illustration of Luke 23:39-43 NLT — "I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise."

About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware and is available in book form.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.