What Is Your Estimate of the Cross?
We read in Galatians 6:14 these words of the Apostle Paul: But God forbid that I should glory (boast) except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. Central to the theme of the Bible is the theme of the cross of Christ. When we carefully read the Scriptures, we learn not only that the calls, summons, and invitations of the cross are made to men of every description of background and character, but that these are made to those of the human race who are of the vilest of that number. In fact, the Scriptures point out deliberately that Christ died for the ungodly (Rom. 5:6), that in His death Christ was numbered with the transgressors, made intercession for the transgressors (Isa. 53:12). The writers of holy writ delight to highlight this reality, that Christ died for the worst of mankind! In fact, the proverbial reproach with which the enemies of Christ charged Him was that He received sinners (Luke 15:2), that he dined with publicans and sinners (Mark 2:16), was accused of befriending them (Luke 7:34)! The Scriptures even furnish us with the names and history of not a few of these, who nonetheless found pardon and peace, who washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb (Rev. 7:14). The churches of Ephesus, Corinth, and Rome were composed of men and women who were once fornicators, adulterers, idolaters, effeminate, abusers of themselves with mankind, thieves, drunkards, revilers and extortioners, but they were washed, sanctified, justified because Jesus Christ suffered, bled, and died on the cross for such sinners! Therefore, we learn from the Bible that the cross is the only hope for sinful men and women!
This is why one man wrote that “the great principles of the cross, understood, believed, loved, felt in their practical influence, constitute true religion. The self-conceit, self-righteousness, self-complacency, and false hopes of men cannot bear the scrutiny of truth; while the truth, in all the consistency and vigor of its principles, is the light and life, and strength of all those hopes of which the cross is the foundation, and that religion of which the cross is the brightest example.” You see, the cross of Christ addresses itself to the language of men and women whose very lives are a witness to the darkness of the age in which we live. The cross speaks to us in our sin, and summons us to the only One Who has an answer for the problem of our sin! Christ alone is the only hope of sinners, and He is able to receive them to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross (Col. 1:20).