Dr. Emerson B. Powery (Ph.D., Duke University)
“This prisoner’s announcement of Jesus’ innocence is unique to Luke’s Gospel. Here, in a more prominent way, Luke wishes to stress the crucifixion of innocent Jesus. Pilate “found in him no ground for the sentence of death” (Luke 23:22). Herod would agree with Pilate’s assessment (23:15). And, in our passage, the second criminal offers his own intuition on the situation: “this man has done nothing wrong” (23:41). When Jesus dies, the centurion’s confession sums up all the others in the chapter: “Certainly this man was innocent (23:47).”
Prayer 67 from the Book of Common Prayer
O Lord Jesus Christ, who in a wonderful Sacrament hast left unto us a memorial of thy passion: Grant us, we beseech thee, so to venerate the sacred mysteries of thy Body and Blood, that we may ever perceive within ourselves the fruit of thy redemption; who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.