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Summary: This sermon contains seven simple yet profound thoughts on the cross of Jesus Christ namely PORTRAIT OF THE CROSS , PARADOX OF THE CROSS ,POSTULATE OF THE CROSS, PARADIGM OF THE CROSS, PATTERN OF THE CROSS ,PROGNOSIS OF THE CROSS AND PUZZLE OF THE CROSS

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MEDITATIONS ON THE CROSS

OUTLINE

1.PORTRAIT OF THE CROSS

2.PARADOX OF THE CROSS

3.POSTULATE OF THE CROSS

4.PARADIGM OF THE CROSS

5.PATTERN OF THE CROSS

6.PROGNOSIS OF THE CROSS

7.PUZZLE OF THE CROSS

THE MESSAGE

MEDITATIONS ON THE CROSS

1.PORTRAIT OF THE CROSS

Isaiah 53 : 7 John 3 : 14 John 10 : 11

There are several portraits or pictures of the cross . We see Jesus as a lamb about to be slaughtered . He became the lamb of God which took away the sins of mankind. He was the lamb sacrificed to atone for the sins of mankind. We see Jesus as a brazen serpent which Moses lifted up in the wilderness to save the dying Israelites. Whoever looked to the brazen serpent was kept alive. Jesus is the remedy for dying humanity to look at and receive abundant life. We see Jesus as a good shepherd who gave his life for the sheep.He was not a hireling who fled when the wolf came. He is the good shepherd who gave his life for us . These are some of the portraits of the cross.

2.PARADOX OF THE CROSS

Colossians 2 : 14-15

The cross is an amazing paradox of a victory which appeared as a defeat. When Jesus was crucified it appeared as a victory for his enemies. The plans to destroy Jesus seemed to have succeeded . The enemies of Christ perhaps celebrated the death of Jesus. It looked like a defeat for Jesus but in reality it was a victory. Jesus won the victory over Satan on the cross. He provided Salvation for mankind through his sacrificial death on the cross. When Jesus shouted ‘It is finished ‘ it was not the sigh of a loser who had lost all hope .Rather it was the shout of a victor who had successfully completed his mission . The plan of God to provide redemption to humanity from sin , sickness , curses , demonic bondage and eternal damnation was successfully fulfilled at the cross.

3.POSTULATE OF THE CROSS

Romans 8 : 32

The cross presents a postulate or an argument to strengthen our faith in difficult times. If God was willing to sacrifice His Son for us , will He not give everything else that we need ? Sometimes people offer to give away their belongings such as books or clothes. But they keep their favourite books and clothes for themselves and give away the rest. But God did not keep even His most favourite object namely His Son for Himself . He loved man so much that He was willing to give His own Son to save mankind. This gives a powerful argument for our faith in difficult times when we doubt the goodness and faithfulness of God. The argument is that if God gave His Son himself for us surely He will also give everything else that we need. The cross gives a strong foundation for our faith.

4.PARADIGM OF THE CROSS

Matthew 27 : 39-54 Luke 23 : 39-43 Galatians 6 : 14

The cross is viewed from many paradigms and different viewpoints by people. When Jesus was hanging on the cross there were different kinds of reactions from people. Some mocked him saying ‘If He is the Son of God let Him come down from the cross ‘ The chief priests and Pharisees mocked Him saying ‘He saved others ,but He is not able to save Himself ‘. One of the thieves crucified along with Jesus also mocked Him saying ‘why don’t save yourself and us ‘ . But the other thief approached Jesus with humility saying’ Lord remember me when you come into your kingdom ‘. Jesus promised him that he would be with Him in paradise. The centurion declared that Jesus was indeed the Son of God when he saw the earthquake after the death of Jesus. Even today the world holds many different views on the cross. People of different religious beliefs react differently to the message of the cross. But the children of God who have experienced the power of the cross , boast and glory in the cross of Jesus which has transformed them.


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