The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God.
1 Corinthians 1:18 NLT
May I ask, “What does the Cross of Christ mean to you?” Has the meaning of the Cross changed for you as you grew in your understanding of who Jesus is and who you are in him?
To be honest, as a baby Christian, I used to cringe at the thought of the Cross and the terrifying scene that took place there. I couldn’t understand why to pray the blood of Christ, that he shed there, to cover someone as protection.
Then, as I was studying, I heard that I was to learn to love the Cross. That meant that I needed to understand what happened there and why it is so very important for me personally.
I now understand that what happened on the Cross to Jesus is Father God’s ultimate proof of his love for us. John 3:16 says, “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.” Even though God had created us in his image and likeness, as a result of our disobedience, we were all headed to eternal separation from him and our purpose for life, which is being in a loving relationship with our heavenly Father.
The Cross created a turning point in history for humankind. From the moment Jesus paid the price for our sin, by taking it upon himself and dying in our place, a new door in eternity was opened, the door of restoration. Those who believe that Jesus is the Son of God and choose him to be their Lord will be restored to their rightful place in Christ.
When Jesus said, “It is finished.” Satan, our enemy who is out to kill, steal and destroy us, was defeated. (John 19:30) The war against humankind was won for us, so that anyone who belongs to Jesus and prays in his name, has authority over the devil and his demons. We say, “Go!” and they must obey.
Until the Cross, those worshiping Yahweh had to work hard, obey hundreds of rules, to be in right relationship with God, and then only temporarily. Now, we who belong to Jesus are totally new creations by grace, undeserved merit earned for us by Jesus on the Cross. We never need to fear condemnation or that God will stop loving us. (2 Cor.5:17; Eph.2:5; Rom.8:1,38)
At the Cross, we come to participate in the “Great Exchange”. We surrender our sin for Christ’s righteousness, our curses for his blessings, our sickness and brokenness for healing and wholeness, our fear for his confident love, and so much more.
The Cross is the doorway to Heaven. Through Christ, and being covered in his righteousness, we are welcome to come boldly and confidently into God’s presence to receive the grace and mercy we need. (Heb.4:16) There we receive our inheritance as children of God, his peace and joy!
Dear friends, be blessed as you choose to love the Cross of Christ. Come to it to surrender every burden and receive rest, peace, love and joy. If you belong to Jesus, you are being restored because of his sacrifice there. Rejoice and celebrate this good news this Easter! Amen.
Mary Sumner ~March 21, 2023