1 Corinthians 1:18
“For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.”
We are living in a day when the message of the church is changing. Churches, and even whole denominations, are moving away from the old message of salvation through the blood of Jesus, and are moving toward a message of salvation through social activism and good works. The old message of the cross is quickly being replaced by a bloodless message that lacks power and that lacks hope. Instead of hearing the devastating, but life changing news that men are sinners, people hear a message that tells them, “I’m OK and you’re OK!”
Well, I would like to take the same stand that the Apostle Paul took all those years ago. When he wrote to the church in Corinth, Paul reminded them that he had been called for one purpose and that purpose was to preach the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. That message was to be his focus and that message was to be his ministry.
Today, I would like to restate the old message. I would like to remind you about what happened that day when the Lord Jesus died on the cross at Calvary. It was that event, which took place at Calvary 2,000 years ago that altered the future for every person who places their faith in the One Who died there that day. This purchased and provided salvation for every person who receives that event as their very own.
A Strange Message — that there should be life out of death. The Jews were looking for a Messiah Who would throw off the Roman yoke and give them liberty from their captors. They totally missed the fact that their Messiah would be One Who would suffer for the sins of the people, (Isaiah 53:1-3).
The message of the cross of Jesus is still a strange message to those who have never experienced its life changing power. To them it is “foolishness“. To the lost, the idea of trusting a suffering, bleeding man for salvation is unfathomable.
The death Christ died on the cross was one of absolute torture. You and I cannot even begin to imagine all the pain that Jesus was forced to endure for our sakes. Allow me to refresh your mind about the terrible price Jesus paid for you and I as He suffered for sin that day. Scourged (Matthew 27:26), Beaten (Luke 22:63-64), Spit upon (Matthew 27:30), Mocked (Matthew 27:26-29), Stripped Naked (Matthew 27:35), Nailed to the Cross (Matthew 27:38).
These truths don’t even begin to scratch the surface of what Jesus suffered for you and me. His was a bitter cup, but one that He drank of willingly so that we might be saved, (Luke 22:41-42).
To hear the details of Christ’s death on the cross is disturbing! But, it is a necessary truth that must be proclaimed and must be heard before there can be salvation. My friend, there is only one way for you to get to God and that is by the way of the cross. There is no salvation apart from faith in the work of Jesus on Calvary. Period.
One of the problems with the modern church is that we have tried to attach too many conditions to salvation. However, the Bible is clear when it tells us that the way to be saved is for the sinner to accept by faith what the Bible teaches about Jesus and His atoning death on the cross, (Romans 10:9-10). This is what the preaching of the cross is all about! It is not about you quitting your sins (This is not to say continue your sinful life), It is about you coming to Jesus by faith! It’s not about turning over a new leaf by our own accord, it’s about placing your faith in Jesus and Him alone for salvation!
In Christ’s death on the cross, God was able to declare boldly, for all to see, His boundless, matchless love for the lost of this world. (Romans 5:6-8) The cross is God’s statement of love to the world (John 15:13).
The Bible, tells us that there is no other way to cleanse sin, but through the sacrifice of an innocent one (Hebrews 9:22). This is seen all the way back in the beginning when Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden, (Genesis 3:21). This same line of thought continues all the way through the days of the Tabernacle and the Temple. There, sin was atoned for by the blood of sheep, bulls and goats, but it was never taken away, (Hebrews 10:4; Hebrews 10:10-11). However, the Lord Jesus went to the cross and died for the sins of humanity. When He did, His death on the cross forever settled the sin debt of man, (Hebrews 10:12-14; Hebrews 9:24-28). Is it clear yet? If not, read Revelations 1:5; 1 Peter 1:18-19.
When the power of the cross is appropriated, three great and wonderful things take place:
Sin Dies — When a person places his/her faith in the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ, that person is forever changed. The chains of sin are broken, (Romans 6:14), and they are made into a new creature, (2 Corinthians 5:17). Now, the new-born believer does not have to live his life in bondage to sin, (Romans. 6:6). The blood has the power to change every life touched by it!
Hell Is Defeated – No blood washed, blood bought individual will ever experience the flames and fires of Hell! One of the most precious verses in the Bible pertaining to this subject is found in John 5:24. There, the Bible tells us that we will never come into condemnation. Romans 8:1 confirms this for us! Thank God, no child of God will ever have to go to Hell, Satan will not get his wish!
Heaven Is Delivered – The blood is the key that unlocks the gates of glory! When the blood is applied, the child of God becomes instantly destined for an eternity in Heaven with the Lord! That is His promise to every believer, (John 14:1-3).
Has the blood been applied to your life? Is your name written down in Heaven? Is your faith in Jesus and in Him alone?
Scripture of the day: Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. ~ John 14:6
Pastor Peter Okereke Jr.
The Living Word Ministries Inc.
Copyright Reserved, 2012.
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