“The Power of the Blood and the Cross”
District Elder M.L. Maughmer, Jr.
1st Corinthians 1:17-18 “For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect. For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God”.
2nd Timothy 4:1-8 “I charge [thee] therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away [their] ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry. For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished [my] course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing”.
“The Power of the Blood and the Cross”
OPENING:- I am still a young man; however, since I was brought up in the church I have a lot of old ways about me. There are aspects of the church that we don’t do much anymore, but I myself look for the time when we shall get back to some of those things. That is a good thing because the Bibles says in Jeremiah 6:16 “Thus saith the Lord, stand ye in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls…..”.
I understand that we are dealing with a new generation and we must change some of our methods in order to be effective in this day and age. We use power points in our praise and worship because it is effective, people that don’t know all the words to the songs can join in and not feel left out because the words are bold right here in front of them that is a good thing. Now this old way that I have is something like this, I like the old songs, I like some of the new ones, but in the old ones there’s substance, there’s meaning, there’s passions, and there’s a message. Based upon my experiences and when I need to truly be uplifted and encouraged I need to go back and grab one of those old songs that just seems to plead my case. Like when I feel like I am struggling and I am walking this walk all by myself. It is then that I go deep into my memory banks and pull out one of those good old songs like “Walk with me Lord walk with me. While I’m on this tedious journey I want Jesus to walk with me. Hold my hand Lord; please hold my hand. Hold my hand Lord; hold, hold my hand. While I'm on this tedious journey I want Jesus to hold my hand”.
There’s nothing wrong with the new songs, but that song is a prayer that comes from deep down on the inside.
LET ME GIVE ANOTHER EXAMPLE:- “There is power power wonder working power in the blood of the Lamb” – That’s a message
“Oh precious is that flow that makes me white as snow no other fount I know nothing but the blood of Jesus – What can wash away my sins nothing but the blood of Jesus”.
“There is a fountain filled with blood drawn from Emmanuel’s veins, and sinners plunged beneath that flood lose all their guilty stains”
“Alas and did my Savior bleed. And did my Sovereign die. Would He devote that sacred head for such a worm as I. At the cross at the cross where I first saw the light and the burden of my heart rolled away, it was there by faith I received my sight and now I am happy all the day”
The term for that today is called OLD SCHOOL, but that is simply that OLD TIME RELIGION- someone said give me that old time religion it’s good enough for me, the old ways for there you will find rest for your souls.
I said Jeremiah 6:16 said ask for the old paths where is the good way and walk therein, but the end of that verse says “But they said we will not walk therein”.
2nd Timothy 4:3 says “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears” That time is now and it is prevalent in this, that we are now dealing with a generation that knows not God. The other night my wife and I watched a little of the 700 club and they did a report on how Biblically Illiterate people are. They asked simple questions like what is the first book of the Bible and what is the last book of the Bible. Can you name one of the Ten Commandments? Sadly many many people failed the simple test. The report went on to say that by the year 2040 that Christianity would be obsolete in America. A country that was founded on the principal of In God We Trust will become a country that has forgotten God. The Bible says all the nations that forget God shall be turned into hell – Psalm 9:17. So when we look at that we as a nation and a people are rapidly approaching being turned into hell. 1st Timothy 4:1-3 says it like this “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; Forbidding to marry, [and commanding] to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth”. Sounds like what is going on right now in society.
I believe that a lot of this is due to the fact that preachers are taking the central theme and central action of the church out of the church and replacing it with watered-down, sugarcoated, self-help simplified, positive thinking, self-gratifying, people-friendly, seeker-sensitive messages that tickle the itchy ears of people while leaving their souls in a sin-sick condition.
WHAT DO I MEAN:- Many churches have taken the central theme – Jesus and His Blood, and the central action – The Cross out of the church.
We have preachers talking about I want you to be comfortable with what God has made you, instead of the confrontation of the cross. When a sermon about the cross is preached it causes a person to deal the sin in their life. You cannot be comfortable with what you are until you deal with what you are doing.
I’m sorry, but the Bible says in Psalm 51:5 “Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me”. Therefore, based upon that alone by nature I am sin, sin is unholy, the Bible says Holiness without, no man shall see the Lord. So until the condition of sin has been rectified you can’t be comfortable because there’s no relationship between you and God.
If there is no relationship between you and the Prince of Peace, that giveth Peace that passeth all understanding, how in the world can you be comfortable in your current condition when you have no peace. I’ m reminded of the bumper sticker that says “Know Jesus – Know Peace, No Jesus – No Peace”. Preachers run around today talking about God just wants you to be happy, but the Bible says in 2nd Peter 3:9 “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance”. God wants you to turn from your wicked ways and until you come to repentance you can’t truly be happy. The Bible says in 2nd Chronicles 7:14 “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land”. That lets me to believe that comfort and happiness will come after there is a turning around, which is simply repentance.
Society today is so messed up and so emotionally sensitive that it’s just despicable. We have a generation that not only knows not God, but is being brought up to believe that there are no losers, that everyone is a winner. Kids play sports the score at the end of the game would be 14 to 3, that means the team that has 14 won and the team that has 3 lost. But this mentality we have today says well we don’t want the psyche of the kids to be effected so we don’t keep score and everyone is a winner. Even in schools in some places the school system has all the children read out loud together so the child that can’t read will not be embarrassed in making mistakes that the others can hear.
This mentality has crept into the church seemingly unaware. Preachers say I don’t want to offend anyone so I won’t preach about hell. I don’t want someone to get upset so I won’t mention the cross. I want people to feel comfortable so I won’t mention repentance. Baby if the devil can come to church and be comfortable something is wrong with the church. A black man in a Ku Klux Klan meeting or a White man in a Black Panther Rally should be more comfortable than the devil and sin in the church. However, the church has become a social gathering place instead of a hospital for the sin-sick, because we worry more about pleasing and making people comfortable than making disciples for Jesus and soldiers in the Kingdom of God.
As Preachers we have a charge in 2nd Timothy 4:2 “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine”. The preaching of the cross to them that are lost, (the emotionally sensitive, the generation that knows not God) them that perish it is foolishness, but unto us which are saved (the WINNERS) it is the power of God.
The Power of the Blood of Jesus and the Cross.
WATCH THIS- The power God gave humanity is the power of the Blood of Jesus that was shed on a cross on hill called Calvary. There is power in the blood of the Lamb and at the cross there is room for anyone that wants to be free from their guilty stains.
**:- In order to be able to understand the power of the blood of the lamb and the cross we need to set a foundation.**
The Bible says in Leviticus 17:11 “For the life of the flesh [is] in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it [is] the blood [that] maketh an atonement for the soul”. Notice He said the LIFE of the flesh – not the comfort, but LIFE. I don’t know about you, but that lets me know that a message needs to deal with life and life is not always comfortable.
Let everything be established by 2 or 3 – therefore.
Hebrews 9:22 says “And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission”. The power – What Power – the power to remit sin, remove the guilty stains, to give life everlasting is in the blood. There is power, power wonder working power in the blood of the Lamb.
When Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden, they tried to cover their nakedness with fig leaves, the Bible says in Genesis 3:21 “Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them”.
WATCH THIS:- Now for an animal to give it’s skin for clothes to be made that animal had to die. The Bible doesn’t say this in so many words, but I’m gonna show you something. I believe that the animal that died that day to clothe Adam and Eve was a lamb. WHY – because it pointed to what Jesus Christ was going to do at the cross. Without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins. So blood had to be shed in the garden for the sin that Adam and Eve had done, and it had to be innocent blood for the guilty. So God sacrificed an innocent lamb, that lamb gave its life so Adam and Eve would be covered. Not only did it cover them naturally but the blood of its life made atonement for the sin they committed. It covered their sin. Since God can’t look upon sin, the blood covered their sin, so when God looked at them He saw the blood, which made atonement for their soul. It didn’t make them comfortable, but it covered what they had done.
Well if we fast forward a few thousand years, we come to a place called Egypt. The Children of Israel were in bondage and God was getting ready to deliver them out of the hands of the enemy. He told Moses, tell the people to kill a lamb, every household, take the blood of the lamb put it on their door post and the mantel of the door, tell them to stay under the blood and when I pass by them I’ll see the blood and death will pass them by. But if they come from under the blood they will surely die.
Well on that night the death angel went out in the land of Egypt everyone that was under the blood lived, but the first born of everyone that wasn’t under the blood, both human and animal died because they weren’t covered by the blood. There’s protection in the blood of the lamb.
Well the Children of Israel were delivered from the hands of their enemy by the blood. While they are in the wilderness God tells Moses build me a Tabernacle so I can dwell amongst my people. He gave Moses detailed instructions of how to build the Tabernacle.
The Tabernacle was divided into 3 sections.
The 1st section was the Court Yard, everyone was allowed in the Courtyard, the altar of burnt offering was in the courtyard.
The 2nd section was the Holy Place, it was separated by a veil, only the priest were allowed in this part, the Holy Place. The priest had been covered by the blood.
The 3rd section was also separated by a veil from the second part, it is called the Holy of Holies and it contained the Ark of the Covenant. The Ark of the Covenant represented the presence of God. It was there on top of the Ark of Covenant was the Mercy Seat. The Mercy Seat had 2 Cherubim angels that faced each other and they were bowed down. Here God would dwell and commune with the High Priest. The only person that was allowed in the Holy of Holies was the High Priest and he could only come in there once a year on the Day of Atonement, but he had to enter carrying the blood of the sacrifice before him. For it was the blood that gave him access into the presence of God.
Isaiah 59:2 says “Because your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid His face from you, that He will not hear”. Because we are sin it takes the blood in order to for God to hear us and for us to enter into His presence.
Let me fast forward some 1500 years or so. We come to a place called Jerusalem and a man unlike any man before him. This man is Jesus, the Lamb slain before the foundation of the world, the Lamb that taketh away the sins of the world. He’s the wonderful counselor, the Mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace. He is innocent, never committed a sin, wasn’t conceived in sin, neither was he born in iniquity. Yet He loves us so much that he stripped Himself of glory, wrapped Himself in flesh, became acquainted with sorrow and grief, bore our transgression, became sin so we may have eternal life. He is the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame. If I were to borrow a line it would be He’s a wonder He’s a wonder.
There’s and old song that says
The blood that Jesus shed for me, 'Way back on Calvary; The blood that gives me strength from day to day, It will never lose its power.
It reaches to the highest mountain, It flows to the lowest valley, The blood that gives me strength from day to day, It will never lose its power.
It soothes my doubts and calms my fears, And it dries all my tears; The blood that gives me strength from day to day, It will never lose its power.
It reaches to the highest mountain, It flows to the lowest valley, The blood that gives me strength from day to day, It will never lose its power.
Let me tell you about the Blood.
They beat Him all night long.
Scourged Him with a flagellum.
Spit upon Him.
Plucked His beard from His face.
Stripped Him naked.
His own mother didn’t even recognize.
Then they placed the cross upon His bloody back. Yet He never said a mumbling word. The shame and humiliation He willingly suffered. The agony and stress, the torture and pain He did because He loves you and me.
They stretched wide.
Nailed Him to the cross.
They hung Him high.
After hanging there for several hours at 3:00 in the afternoon, which was the time of the sacrifice in the Temple.
Jesus looked to heaven and said it is finished. This is very important.
WATCH THIS:- When the priest would slay the sacrifice on the altar. He would take the knife, place it under the neck of the sacrifice, has he took the knife and cut the throat of the sacrifice, the priest would say it is finished indicating the price for the sin had been paid by the shedding of blood. The blood of the innocent had be given for the prince of the guilty.
If it had not been for the blood and the cross where would I be.
The cross is God’s statement of Love to the world.
The cross is the bridge that allows me and you to be reconciled with God.
When Jesus died upon the cross, the veil in the Temple was rent from top to bottom, His blood was given to pay the price of sin. Now because of the blood and the cross I don’t have to have a priest God before God for me but I can enter into the presence of God for myself.
When you try to take the blood and the cross out of the church, there’s no direction, there’s no way you can get to God, there’s no way you can be comfortable because without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sin, without the cross there is a gap between you and God.
That’s why the songwriter said “At the cross at the cross where I first saw the light and the burdens of my heart rolled away it was there by faith I received my sight and now I am happy all the day”.
WATCH THIS:- There are 3 things that happen at the cross. The cross has always been a symbol of death. Nowhere can you find that the cross is a symbol of Christianity, that’s what man has turned it not because they want to be comfortable with the cross, but the cross has never made anybody comfortable. It represented shame, guilt, and death. You got rappers, gang-bangers, thugs, drug dealers wearing crosses because they think that it shows that they are Christian, but if they understood the meaning of the cross they would take it off.
I said 3 things happen at the cross.
1. Sin dies at the cross.
2. Hell is defeated at the cross.
3. Heaven is delivered at the cross.
SIN DIES:- When a person places their faith in the shed blood of Jesus and the cross, WATCH THIS – old things are passed away and behold hold all things become new. Their old habits, that old nature, that old way of thinking is changed. Paul said it like this in Galatians 2:20 “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me”. My sin nature is changed I am dead to the old things that I used to do. I am cleansed from the guilt of sin at the cross. That’s why the songwriter said “There is a fountain filled with blood drawn from Emmanuel’s veins and sinners plunged beneath that flood lose all the guilty stains”. You can’t have an encounter with the blood and the cross and not realize that I am sinner. People don’t want to preach the blood and the cross because it exposes that you need to die, that’s the confrontation of the cross, when you experience the cross it lets you know that there are some things in me that need to die. See the cross doesn’t say that I am a Christian, but it says I have been found guilty of sin and I must die out in order to have everlasting life.
When the cross is preached it will bring a person face to face with their sin. It demands that we all must die to the worldly pleasures. That’s why the Bible says to those that are lost the preaching of the cross is foolishness, but when you died out to sin then you understand that the preaching of the cross is the power of God. What can wash away my sins nothing but the blood of Jesus. Where did I receive my sight at the cross all my sins have gone away at the cross. I took the plunge into the fountain filled with blood drawn from Emmanuel’s veins and I lost all sins guilty stains at the cross.
HELL IS DEFEATED:- The Bible says in John 5:24 “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life”. Condemnation is the punishment of sin, but at the cross I died out to sin, I became a new creature by faith when I accepted what Jesus did on the cross. I was washed in His blood, the guilt of sin was removed from me, the price of my freedom was paid. Now when I accept what Jesus did on the cross and let His blood wash me of my sins, which is the washing of regeneration – WATCH THIS – Hell can’t touch me. The devil can’t have me so Hell is defeated. I have victory – I am victory. I am more than a conqueror, I am a son of God, I’m covered by the blood. Romans 8:1 says it like this “[There is] therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit”.
HEAVEN IS DELIVERED:- Because the blood of Jesus and the cross the Kingdom of Heaven is available to all those that will accept the power of the blood and the cross. Jesus said in John 14:1-3 “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if [it were] not [so], I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, [there] ye may be also”. In my father’s house that’s Heaven, the presence of God, the Holy of Holies. When I accept the sacrifice of Jesus at the cross of Calvary and I make Him my personal Lord and Savior instantly access to Heaven is made available unto me, just like it was on the day that Jesus died on the cross.
Remember I said when Jesus said it was finished and he hung His head and died, the veil in the Temple was rent from top to bottom. It exposed the Holy of Holies to everyone. Well when you and I accept by faith the blood of Jesus and the cross, the Holy of Holies, which is Heaven is delivered, we have access through the blood of Jesus to enter into the presence of God.
I can now come before His presence boldly. I can enter into His gates with Thanksgiving and into His courts with Praise.
There is power in the blood of the Lamb and there is power in the cross.
The Blood of the Lamb washes me of my sins.
The cross when I pick it up allows me to become His disciple.
I have died out to sin and I am now a new creature.
If it had not been for the blood and the cross.
There’s a song that we used to sing, it’s one of those old songs, the old paths that goes like this.
“On a hill far away stood an old rugged cross the emblem of suffering and shame and I love that old cross where the dearest and best for a world of lost sinners was slain.
So I’ll cherish (it’s personal) the old rugged cross, till my trophies at last I lay down. I will cling to the old rugged cross and exchange it someday for a crown.
O that old rugged cross, so despised by the world, has a wondrous attraction for me, for the dear Lamb of God left His glory above to bear it to dark Calvary.
In that old rugged cross, stained with blood so divine, a wondrous beauty I see, for twas on that old rugged cross Jesus suffered and died to pardon and sanctify me.
To that old rugged cross I will ever be true its shame and reproach gladly bear, then He’ll call me some day to my home far away where His glory forever I’ll share”.
The Old Rugged Cross.
In my closing I like to say the words to another old song that goes like this.
“The cross upon which Jesus died is a shelter in which we can hide and its grace so free is sufficient for me.
And deep is its fountain as wide as the sea.
There’s room at the cross for you.
Though millions have come there’s still room for one.
Yes there’s room at the cross for you.
Though millions have found Him a friend and have turned from the sins they have sinned.
The savior still waits to open the gates and welcome a sinner before its too late.
There’s room at the cross for you.
Though millions have come there’s still room for one. Yes there’s room at the cross for you.
The hand of my Savior is strong and the Love of my Savior is long.
Through sunshine or rain through loss or in gain.
The blood flows from Calvary to cleanse every stain”.
There’s room at the cross for you