BACK TO THE CROSS
February 1, 2009
Revelation 2:1-5 The church at Ephesus was a model church for all those that came after to follow. They had many good works. They had labored, they had great patience along with an attitude of turning from evil that was second to none. But as we look at their positive attributes that are listed for all eternity to see and read, one attribute is obviously missing, their love for the Son of God. This missing element that was there at the beginning of their ministry was the one characteristic that God demands that we carry with us until our race has been completed. How can we get and keep the great attribute of “love for our Lord?” We can get it and keep it by taking a “look back at the cross”.
THE CROSS OF SACRIFICE
Isaiah 53:4-7 God hates sin, but He loves sinners. The sacrifice of God was to put on Jesus what should have been put onto us. However, because of our sinfulness, it would not have done us any good to take Jesus place, God needed a “perfect sacrifice” for sins.
Hebrews 12:2 Jesus suffered every way a man can suffer: physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally. The cross of death called for Jesus to be stripped naked for all to witness His shame.
John 3:16 We must remember that it was God who sent His Son into this ungodly world knowing in advance what this world would do to His precious Son on that day of horror that Jesus endured It was a sacrificial love that we cannot comprehend.
Isaiah 53:10 How it must have hurt our Heavenly Father to crush and bruise His Son, yet, the scripture tells us that “it pleased the Lord to bruise Him”. How can we fathom that in our meek minds.
Isaiah 50:6 See the agony of being whipped with His back ripped open and His flesh ripped from His body. His face bloody from His beard being ripped off and the spittle of the mockers covering Him.
Romans 5:6-8 Here we see the sacrificial love of the Father and the Son. The Son being the substitute for the sinner. Has it ever been recorded where a good man gave his life for mankind?
THE CROSS OF LOVE
John 3:16-17 God has revealed His love to us by giving everything He could give in order to prove His unwavering love for mankind. God wants the whole world to be saved for Christ’s sake.
John 10:11 Jesus tells us here that there are those who would steal, kill and destroy us if they get a chance. Jesus wants to give us an “abundant life” and says that He will give His life for “the sheep”.
John 15:12-14 As we look back at the cross, we see Jesus saying to His disciples that He wants them to love each other as He has loved them, sacrificially and totally. He says that there is no greater love than the love He will show them as He “lays down His life for His friends”.
Romans 8:34-39 Looking at Jesus hanging there, can you see Him smiling at you and saying, “Because I’m doing this, nothing will ever separate you from my Father’s love”.
I John 4:9-10 Under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, John tells us that it is by Jesus death on the cross that God showed His love for us. The “propitiation” here means that it is Christ that is the Personal means by whom God can show mercy to sinners.
Luke 23:34 While on the cross Jesus showed His undying love for even His enemies.
Luke 23:42-43 While in tremendous agony and pain, Jesus took time to win a lost sinner with His unending love.
While taking a few minutes of contemplation and just thinking on the time that Jesus spent on the cross for all the world, what is He saying to you, or better asked, what are you saying to Him?