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December 8, 2019 | Doug Sauder
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“But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but a new creation.”—Galatians 6:14-15 (NKJV)
Most of us tend to boast from time to time. It may be about a favorite sports team, a job, or even a church.
Paul wanted fellow Christians to remember that the most important thing to boast about is the cross of Jesus Christ and the power of the cross for salvation. Why does Paul boast in the cross of Christ? Because it expresses the fullest extent of God’s love. Jesus willingly suffered for us to save us, to help us, and to bless us. We are to glory in the cross because Jesus conquered and defeated the devil, sin, and death. The power of the cross gives us constant victory over the power of our flesh. It brings us deliverance, abundant life, and eternal life.
Warren Wiersbe says, “The cross meant liberty: from self (Galatians 2:20), the flesh (Galatians 5:24), and the world (Galatians 6:14). The power of the cross allows us wonderful deliverance and victory. Yielding and obedience to Him is victory over the world and the flesh. The message of the cross should be evident in your life.”
People who lived during the time of Jesus did not equate “cross” with “glory.” The cross was the most humiliating, shameful way to be executed, even more so than hanging. Death on a cross was horrendous, the ultimate display of weakness and shame. Scripture even calls it a curse: “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, ‘Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree’)” (Galatians 3:13 NKJV).
Yet, Paul came to understand the real power of the cross. He did not care for glory that came from fame or status. Paul experienced the impact of the cross personally.
Maxie Dunnam says, “What does the cross really mean in the life of the people? It is a ‘cross-style’ life to which we are called. God so loved the world that He gave His Son. His expectation for us is to love the world and give ourselves for it. The Spirit of Christ is given to enable us to love with His love, to die to self, and to give ourselves for others.”
The world needs the message of the cross: that God so loved the world that He sent His Son to die in our place. May our lives display God’s love and the glory of the cross!
DIG: The cross was an instrument of death. Have you ever considered it as an instrument of love?
DISCOVER: Read Galatians 2:20 and ponder what it means for your life. Glory in what the cross means to you.
DO: The world needs to see Jesus Christ—the Hope of glory—in you. People are looking for answers in life, so be sure to point them to the real answer—the cross of Christ.