Monday, May 27, 2013

May 26, 2013 | Why the Cross Matters

Sunday we started a new sermon series focusing in on the cross. We began introducing the subject by emphasizing both the centrality and the necessity of the cross. In 1 Corinthians 2:2, Paul states that he has determined to know nothing except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. This means that when he speaks of marriage, life, the resurrection, the church, unity, or love he does so from the perspective of the cross. The cross to Paul, and to us I pray, is central to everything we believe, teach, do, say, think, and are.

18 For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19 For it is written,
“I will destroy the wisdom of the wise,
And the cleverness of the clever I will set aside.”

20 Where is the wise man? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? 21 For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not come to know God, God was well-pleased through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe. 22 For indeed Jews ask for signs and Greeks search for wisdom; 23 but we preach Christ crucified, to Jews a stumbling block and to Gentiles foolishness, 24 but to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
26 For consider your calling, brethren, that there were not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble; 27 but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, 28 and the base things of the world and the despised God has chosen, the things that are not, so that He may nullify the things that are, 29 so that no man may boast before God. 30 But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, 31 so that, just as it is written, “Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord.”

And when I came to you, brethren, I did not come with superiority of speech or of wisdom, proclaiming to you the testimony of God. For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified. I was with you in weakness and in fear and in much trembling, and my message and my preaching were not in persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith would not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God.

In Matthew 16:21-23 the writer tells us that following the events at Caesarea Philippi, Jesus began to tell the disciples that He must go to Jerusalem and die and be raised. The cross, therefore, is necessary. Jesus could have done nothing else. There was no other option.

21 From that time Jesus began to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised up on the third day. 22 Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “God forbid it, Lord! This shall never happen to You.” 23 But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but man’s.”


For more:
Sermon Notes: The Loved of God
"Precious Blood": A Review
"Death By Love" by Mark Driscoll & Gerry Breshears: A Review
"The Cross of Christ" by John Stott: A Review
"Blood Work" by Anthony Carter: A Review

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