Thought for the Morning
"The Joy Set Before Him"
"Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith,
who for the joy that was set before him
endured the cross, despising the shame,
and is set down at the right hand of God."
The "joy that was set before" Jesus was not his salvation but ours. Jesus told Peter, when Judas had led the mob into the garden of Gethsemene to arrest him, that he could cry out to his Father and "more than twelve legions of angels" would come to rescue him.
So, Jesus endured the cross not to save himself; he could have returned home at any time. Rather, he endured the cross for the joy of having us where he is. In his mind, he pictured us being with him in the presence of the Father, and that hope was so precious to him that it made Jesus willing to endure the cross and "despise the shame".