God shows no partiality between Christians.
In the parable of the dragnet the kingdom of heaven is described by Jesus “Like a net thrown into the sea and gathered fish of every kind.” Matthew 13: 47. RSV Bible. I believe that God doesn’t see us in little nets with a label: I’m an ‘Anglican’ or I belong to ‘The Life’ Church etc. I think he sees his believers ‘in a net full of fishes of every kind’ the one church whose faith is in Jesus. Matthew 13: 47-50. Habakkuk 1: 14, 15.
Jesus shows no partiality between the criminal and anybody else.
“One of the criminals hanging beside him scoffed, “So you’re the Messiah, are you? Prove it by saving yourself—and us, too, while you’re at it!” 40 But the other criminal protested, “Don’t you fear God even when you have been sentenced to die? 41 We deserve to die for our crimes, but this man hasn’t done anything wrong.” 42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom.” 43 And Jesus replied, “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.” Luke 23: 39-43. NLT Bible Translation
There’s no partiality, suffering comes to us all through the effects of sin and its causes in the world.
Jesus in his own personal suffering on the cross ministered to the two men going through suffering at either-side of him.
When we as Christians are faced with suffering in our own lives and find ourselves being called to minister to a friend or a relative in their suffering, so where do we draw our strength from?
Jesus in his weakness was faced with this on the cross: in the impulse of the moment one of the criminals said, “So you’re the Messiah, are you? Prove it by saving yourself—and us, too, while you’re at it!” Jesus was hearing the words of ridicule being repeated by the criminal that had been shouted out by the rulers and soldiers, “He saved others; let him save himself, if he is the Christ, the Chosen One.” The soldiers also mocked him . . . “If you are the King of the Jews, save yourself!” Luke 23: 35-37
In that moment of great agony he never retaliated or tried to explain that it was God’s will for him to be lifted up on a cross. Instead His Father God intervened in His great love for Jesus and upheld him by the other man’s response to his words he said, “Don’t you fear God even when you have been sentenced to die? 41 We deserve to die for our crimes, but this man hasn’t done anything wrong.” This man’s remarks indicated that he believed that Jesus was Christ the King of Israel.
His Father undertook by allowing this other man’s words to comfort Jesus.
From the man’s remarks he stated that he was being punished for his crime against society, death by crucifixion, but he believed that Jesus was innocent because he was Christ the King. “
The man’s humility when he made his commitment to follow Jesus. “Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom.” Jesus responded to the criminal’s faith in him, 43 And Jesus replied, “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.”
The man labelled as a criminal, Jesus showed no partiality when he responded to this man’s request, it proves that through faith in Jesus whosoever, can enter God’s kingdom.
Jesus had God’s strength to bear the sins of the whole world and mercy and grace to forgive all sins against God, including those who responded in ignorance. Jesus was heard from on the cross to say, “Father forgive them; for they no not what they do.” Luke 23: 34.RSV Bible
As I understand, his forgiveness included those who mocked him, because he knew that his fellow Jews had been taught from the law that the Christ would remain for ever. John 12: 34. ‘The Messiah’s Secret’ Dorothy Newton.
Faith in Jesus being our strength.
“I Believe in Miracles” by Kathryn Kuhlman “The disciple’s faith was with them all the time: it had never left them for one second. He was their faith; but the mistake they made was in forgetting the fact of His Presence, while discerning the fact of the storm! That is exactly what Jesus meant when he said, “Without me you can do nothing.” He, then is your faith.”
In our suffering and in support of others in their suffering, we draw our strength from our faith in Jesus. Jesus is the unseen assurance of things hoped for and conviction of things not seen. Hebrews 11: 1.
“Jesus said, “I do not pray for these only, but also for those who believe in me through their word, 21 that they may all be one; even as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.” John 17: 20, 21.RSV Bible
Paul in his letter to the church at Colossae, “For this I toil, striving with all the energy which he (Christ in you) mightily inspires within me.” Colossians 1: 29.. RSV Bible
The Holy Spirit’s Presence
“I Believe in Miracles” by Kathryn Kuhlman wrote, “This was the beginning of this healing ministry which God had given me; strange to some because of the fact that hundreds have been healed just sitting quietly in the audience, without any demonstration whatsoever, and even without admonition. This is because the Presence of the Holy Spirit has been in such an abundance that by His Presence alone, sick bodies are healed, even as people wait on the outside for the doors to open.”
Kathryn Kuhlman in her book emphasised that it’s by simple faith in Jesus, the Holy Spirit’s Presence witnessed to them in healing wholeness: body, soul and spirit. Faith is a gift from God, so we look to Jesus the author of our faith and without faith we cannot please God.