Summary: A study of the Cross, and the meaning of redemption. It entails a study of sin,guilt, curse and alienation and how Jesus overcame these
I feel I stand on holy ground tonight, For we come to think of that which stands at the heart of our faith that without which there would be nothing. And it is incumbent upon me to lead your thoughts. So before I proceed any further I would pause, and ask the Holy Spirit to anoint my words and to anoint our hearts our minds and our wills. ..
The Apostle Paul, writing to the Corinthians said. that when he came among them first of all’ with the gospel he had resolved to know nothing....except Jesus Christ, and him crucified (1 Cor 2;2) He had came with the message of the cross (which) was foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved, it is the power of God (1 Cor 1:18). To the Galatians he wrote May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ (6: 14)
The Cross is the power of Gad- and I would suggest that if it is not the felt-power in our lives we have some bard thinking, searching and questioning to do.
I want tonight to see why the cross is so central, important and powerful. And that we cannot divorce
from the Cross the precious blood. of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Cross is God’s response to man’s sin, to man’s rebellion, to the crafty schemes of Satan. We thought two weeks ago of how that situation of sin and human guilt and helplessness meant that it was necessary that One came who was both God and man- and such is our Lord Jesus Christ, He is (Isa 7:4) Immanuel; ’God with us’, Yet, the coming of God in human form would not, of itself have done anything for the human situation, The Lord Jesus spoke not just to his hearers, but of himself when he said
Unless a grain of wheat falls to the g:round and dies, it remains only a single seed (John 12:24)
He knew his Father could save him from what was tn come upon him, but ’No’ , he said It was for this very reason that I came to this hour. Father, glorify your name (John 12:27-28)
There are many words used to try and describe and explain what happened. at the Cross and it would be foolish to try and look at them all in 20 minutes of one evening!.
Nothing , either, can fully describe what happened in those few hours. One of the must commonly used, and on which I wish especially to focus this evening is REDEMPTION.
Paul, there is Romans 3 has it. In verse 24 (I’ll begin in verse 23)
All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Jesus Christ
I feel we need to go one step further back and remind ourselves of the extent and nature of the problem, One of the greatest of preachers of this century, Martyn Lloyd-Jones said this
"In the same way look at the cross on Calvary’s hill, What is it? What does it mean? What is it telling us? What is happening there? I say...you cannot possibly understand the death of our Lord and what he did there on that cross unless you are very clear about this doctrine of sin, ..(Many people) have never understood the problem."
Sin is the problem. All have sinned. Tho first sin and its consequences we thought of some weeks ago when looking at Genesis. We saw then that sin has three consequences
1. Guilt. We know at root that are are responsible to God. We may try to evade the issue. He may try and hide away our feelings of guilt and shame; they make us mighty uncomfortable. If, as we ought we pray for God to act in sovereign revival Holy Spirit power’ let us know that if he answers we shall see sin as we’ve never seen it
before and will cry out to God for mercy.
(Adam and Eve) realized that they were naked, so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves. Then the.man and his wife heard the sound of
the Lord...and they hid themselves from the Lord God (Gen 3:7-8)
Guilt, share and fear go together and we’re all surely familiar with this truth,
2’ Alienation. The Lord God called to the man, Where are you? (Gen 3:9), His union with God; his knowledge of God were lost. So, there’s a barrier between us and God in his holiness. And , again there are barriers between individuals, Again I would call upon our experiences. Haw a thoughtless word can produce ran atmosphere you could cut with a knife
3. Curse. God is holy; God must act against sin. If sin left no curse, would we ever bother? If everything in the garden was lovely- what a fascinating expression! But everything in the garden is not lovely. It grows weeds. And the greatest curse is death