“The message of the cross was perplexing to Jews and Gentiles alike–a scandalous stumbling block to the Jews and a meaningless act of self-sacrifice to the Gentiles,” writes Mark Templer in the Cross of the Savior.
“But to us as Christians, it is power and wisdom of God, the focal point of our faith. It is the light that shines in our darkest night. It is the hope that keeps us sane when all are losing their heads. It is our lifeline when we are drowning in the muck. It is our only hope in a dark and sinful world, Templer affirms.
We live in a world that’s lost its way. It’s a world of partisan politics. Racial tension. Senseless violence. Religious division. Unbridled lusts. And godless individualism.
For many, even Christians, it’s a time of confusion. Perplexity. Doubt. Fear. Worry. And emotional stress.
While it may not seem so, Paul Harvey’s words are still appropriate, “In times like these it is helpful to remember that there have always been times like these.”
The Biblical accounts themselves, let alone secular history, confirms extremely dark and sinful times in man’s history. The pre-flood world. The period of Judges. The Assyrian siege. The destruction of Jerusalem. Babylonian captivity. And the wicked Roman world during Jesus’ day.
Jesus’ message and that of the apostles is sorely needed today in these troubling times. Paul’s ancient, inspired observation continues to ring true, “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” (1 Cor 1:18).
On this Lord’s Day, Christians assemble all over the world to celebrate “the message of the cross.”
The message of the cross proclaims…
…That people are important to God. And they should be to us.
…That God loves everyone regardless of skin color, ethnic background, or national origin.
…That Jesus died to save you and me from sin and free us from Satan’s bondage.
…That even though none of us are perfect, we can be pardoned.
…That we all need to come to the cross and receive the cleansing power of Jesus’ blood.
…That God wants Christians to be unified in Christ. Templer observed that
“Jesus came to this earth to build a community of Believers…” We are a Family.
…That we can receive forgiveness. Obtain mercy. Experience grace. Find peace. And feel spiritually secure.
…That there is help and hope to navigate the confusing maze of this crazy world.
Today, let us assemble as one united spiritual Body of Christ and powerfully proclaim “the message of the cross.” And then go forth to daily live it in a world that desperately needs to hear it. And to see it.
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman