March 21, 2008

The Cross

A couple of months ago I mentioned Jesus in a room full of people with all different religious affiliations. A man from that event spoke with me later and essentially told me that it was inappropriate for me to speak the name of Jesus there. He told me that other kinds of spirituality or a more generalized description of my god would be okay, but not Christ. This is not the first person I have met that is okay with generic Christian things like God, church, and morality, but offended whenever I start saying the name of Jesus. This man's willingness to confront me was a bit surprising, but his annoyance with my Lord shouldn't be. Scripture states this is how people will react...

1 Corinthians 1:17-24 (NASB):

For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not in cleverness of speech, so that the cross of Christ would not be made void. For the word of the cross is
foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written,

"I WILL DESTROY THE WISDOM OF THE WISE,
AND THE CLEVERNESS OF THE CLEVER I WILL SET ASIDE."


Where is the wise man? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not come to know God, God was well-pleased through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.

For indeed Jews ask for signs and Greeks search for wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, to Jews a stumbling block and to Gentiles foolishness, but to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.

The cross divides. It's hard to accept, but it's true. When we face the cross, we must choose to believe or deny what happened on that cross. Believing means that we admit our righteousness is like filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6). If we could be saved any other way there would be no need for the cross. He took the punishment we deserve.

Isaiah 53:5-7:

But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was upon him,
and by his wounds we are healed.

We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
each of us has turned to his own way;
and the LORD has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.

He was oppressed and afflicted,
yet he did not open his mouth;
he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,
and as a sheep before her shearers is silent,
so he did not open his mouth.

Lord, thank you for enduring the cross.

3 comments:

jill said...

doesn't that make you mad tho?? that they could talk about allah, mohammed, budda, etc but CHRIST is not allowed. my nature (which i'd have to fight against) would be to bring up Christ every time i went there. humans are so arrogant and prideful and satan has done a great job of hiding that behind alot of different masks. thanks for being such a great witness alicia!

Holly said...

I "stumbled" across your blog and find it refreshing that you mentioned this experience you had. I, too, am frustrated with our fight to keep Jesus front and center!! Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

That picture of Timothy just cracks me up everytime I read your blog. He looks so big. It breaks my heart that he doesn't even know who I am anymore. Dena