What Jesus Did! 'The Gamble' — Mark 15:24

Friday, December 6, 2024

Then the soldiers nailed [Jesus] to the cross. They divided his clothes and threw dice to decide who would get each piece.
— Mark 15:24 NLT

Key Thought

Just as the soldiers at the foot of this cross gambled for Jesus' clothes, people still gamble on the cross of Christ today. Anytime people refuse to recognize who was crucified on that cross, they gamble with their future — their eternal future — assuming that Jesus was only just another man. The stakes of this gamble are incredibly high. Either Jesus offers eternal life with God or he is a delusional, self-appointed messiah. The Place of the Skull where Jesus was crucified leaves no other options for us to place a wager. For those who believe in what Jesus did at this cross and commit their lives to him, their faith promises them life. For those who do not believe, there is only a horribly risky gamble that this Jesus was just another man. We know from Mark 15:39 that at least one soldier acknowledged Jesus as God's Son. What have you decided about the identity of this man, Jesus, on this cross?

Today's Prayer

Father in heaven, I believe that Jesus died on the cross to save me from my sins. I believe you raised Jesus from the dead. I have been baptized to share in his death, and I have been raised to walk in a new life trusting in your saving power. I believe that Jesus' death and resurrection broke the power that Satan and his demons had over me through death. Please help me keep dead the old life I have left. Empower me by your Spirit so that I can be a living witness to the power of your Son's love and your grace. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • 1 Corinthians 1:18-25
  • Colossians 2:11-15
  • Galatians 6:14


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Illustration of Mark 15:24 NLT — Then the soldiers nailed [Jesus] to the cross. They divided his clothes and threw dice to decide who would get each piece.

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.