The Greatest Love

"And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit." - Matthew 27:50

Ernest Gordon was a World War II prisoner-of-war who survived the horrors of the Japanese death camp by the River Kwai in Burma. In his book "Through the Valley of the Kwai", Gordon described how the unbearable despair of the death-camp was transformed into a spiritual triumph of a "Church Without Walls." The POWs were turned into slaves and forced to build a Railroad of Death for transporting prisoners to death camps and Japanese soldiers to the battlefront. These prisoners were tortured, diseased, starved and worked to the point of exhaustion. "Every man's hand was against every other's," wrote Gordon.

At one day's end, as the tools were being counted and the prisoners were about to return to their camp, the Japanese guard declared that a shovel was missing. He demanded to know which prisoner had stolen the shovel. "All die! All die!" Shrieked the guard. He cocked his rifle, aimed it at the prisoners and promised to shoot them all. At that moment one Scottish soldier stepped forward. Standing at attention he calmly declared, "I did it." The guard viciously clubbed the hapless prisoner to death. When they returned to the camp, the tools were again counted, and no shovel was missing. That soldier sacrificed his life so that his companions could live.

Christ willingly laid down His life so we may know God. Today in prayer, praise Jesus for His matchless love for you and His sacrifice on the Cross for your sins.

"Christ spoke of faith, hope, love, and forgiveness. And these are things I think we need to be reminded of again. He forgave as he was tortured and killed. And we could do with a little of that behavior." - Mel Gibson

God's Word: "Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." - John 15:13

By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2003, Devotional E-Mail DEVOTIONS FOR GOOD FRIDAY [email protected]

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