Friday, April 22, 2011

Good Friday: The Cross

I could attempt a theological post about the cross of Christ, but it would be severely lacking since I've only dabbled in theological reading. I could retell the events of Jesus' death, burial and resurrection, but you can read that for youself. I could try to explain the significance of each detail surrounding the events, but again, I would miss too much.

So today, on this day we call Good Friday, I will tell you my experience with the cross of Christ:

I sat in my recliner, the girls outside playing with friends. I'd been reading my Bible all afternoon, mostly passages from the Psalms. But my sin was heavy, like a physical weight on my chest. The images of my gross behavior flashed repeatedly in my mind. It was as if I was glued to my seat, made to watch re-runs of the summer I sinned so abundantly. The only word I can use to explain my state of mind as I sat there is torture. I was mentally tortured. The more I read from Psalms, the more I wanted to be rid of the images.

In an instant, I ran upstairs to my bedroom, flung the door closed, dropped to my knees, and fell face down on the floor. Weeping, I cried out, God, I can't take this anymore. You have to make this stop. I'm laying it all down at the foot of the cross. I don't want it back. I can't handle it anymore. Please take it and make it go away!

I had no idea that God would really answer that prayer. But within minutes, I stood with the weight removed. I wondered if it was temporary. Four years later, I can tell you that what I laid down at the foot of the cross that day was taken and cast from me. I was set on the path to freedom and healing that day.

Jesus' death was not in vain. Imagine for a moment the vilest thing you've ever done. Now think about Jesus willingly being put to death so you wouldn't have to pay the penalty for that sin.

The penalty for sin is God's wrath. Jesus paid the penalty to spare us. That's how much He loves us.

Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed. (Is. 53:4-5, NIV)





The cross.

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