Having The Last Word

March 25, 2002
by Mary Daniel

Luke 23:34 – Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots. (KJV)

Often, towards the end of a speech or lecture, the presenter will say something like, "One last word before I leave you." Or, perhaps, sometimes we have felt it necessary to have the last word, or been the brunt of others who feel that they must always "have the last word".

"Always getting the last word in edgewise" denotes someone who feels that what they have to say is so important as to butt in while someone else is speaking, to ensure that their point will be the last one made — and thereby remembered.

While many important words of the wise may indeed be heard in this manner, there are none so important as those spoken by a young man many years ago. Jesus had stood in innocence before Pilate, falsely accused by chief priests, rulers, and the people, of stirring up trouble. Though Pilate had been able to find in Jesus no fault, and had been willing to release him, instead he had released Barabbas and had submitted Jesus to the cries of "Crucify him! Crucify him!" As Jesus was crucified on Calvary, with a common thief on either side, his last words, according to Luke, were not ones of damnation, accusation, or for self-satisfaction, but words spoken with love, words spoken in a plea for forgiveness for his persecutors: "Father forgive them, for they know not what they do."

Prayer: May we be ever mindful of Your last words, Lord, that, in our pursuit to "have the last word", we may remember to speak them from a place of love and kindness. In Your name we pray. Amen.

About the author:

Mary Daniel <marydee@shaw.ca>
Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada

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