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Articles

Instead. . .

The devil advised Jesus, “Serve Yourself.” When Jesus was hungry, the tempter suggested, “If you are the Son of God, command, that these stones become bread” (Matthew 4:3).

Peter advised Jesus, “Look out for Yourself.” When Jesus warned the apostles that He must suffer many things and be killed, Peter responded, “God forbid it, Lord! This shall never happen to you” (Matthew 16:22).

Jesus’ own brothers advised Him, “Show Yourself.” When it was time for the Feast of Booths, they urged, “Leave here and go into Judea, so that your disciples may see Your works which You are doing. For no one does anything in secret when he himself seeks to be known publicly. If you do these things, show Yourself to the world” (John 7:3-4).

Pilate advised Jesus, “Defend Yourself.” Responding to Jesus’ silence, the Roman judge challenged, “Do you not speak to me? Do you not know that I have authority to release You, and I have authority to crucify You” (John 19:10).

The crowd at Calvary advised Jesus, “Save Yourself.” As Jesus hung on the cross, “Those passing by were hurling abuse at Him, wagging their heads, and saying, ‘Ha! You who are going to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save Yourself, and come down from the cross!’” (Mark 15:29-30). The Roman soldiers who crucified Jesus said something similar (Luke 23:36-37).

Jesus did none of these things. Instead, He gave Himself. By so doing and dying, Jesus not only atoned for our sins, He also showed us how to live! “. . . Christ lives in me . . . who loved me and gave Himself up for me” (Galatians 2:20).

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