Monday, March 18, 2013

Come With me To The Cross

Here is a fact. We cannot come to the foot of the cross without Jesus. He is the reason we go to the cross and while at the cross He is right there with us. My question is. Do we go to the cross enough? I don't. I mean, I see the cross, know the cross, but at some point, do you ever feel as though you have taken the cross for granted? At some point, I think we all do. Jesus is no longer on the cross. But it is at the cross we find freedom in Jesus. The cross is personal. Its intimate. Its where we find life.

I have been caught in a passage in Matthew over the last few days. Take a look at Matthew 26:36-46. Over the next few days I'm going to stay here within these verses and spend some time writing. Here in these passages we see Jesus praying in the garden of Gethsemane. He knows what is about to take place. He will come face to face with the cross. Its this picture that I cannot get out of my head. I'm trying to wrap everything I have around why my Savior would die for me. For me, Robin Prater. The answer is that Jesus was following the will of His Father. It all comes down to love.

Okay, what really gets me is this. Jesus died on the cross. Maybe its because Easter is approaching. I'm not sure, but I am having a whole new experience at the cross. To that I gotta say, Amen! Each and every day we need to experience Jesus. Not just talk the talk, but truly walk the walk and in that walk we need to experience the cross. Don't you think? We can't have that walk without the cross.

Jesus died for all of mankind. Not just some. Not the few and chosen, but all. Do we really get that?

Until the cross Jesus knew no sin. He had not encountered sin. Sure, He was tempted, but Jesus knew no sin. He was sinless. Our Savior was sinless. Blameless. It was at the cross He was covered in sin. Not just my sin that occurred at 5pm last night. Not just my sin for the date of January 21st. My sin for my entire life. Sin I had yet to commit. Jesus took it all upon Himself. Why? So that I could find life. So that I could have life. Forgiven. Grace. Mercy. Its all found at the foot of the cross.

He didn't just die for my sin. Not just my family. Not just my friends. Not only my town, but the city. The state. The world. Think about that, friends. The entire world's sin was upon Jesus at the cross. The Savior who had never encountered sin before.

How do you feel when you know that you have sinned? I mean just one sin. That gossip that was shared Sunday after church before ever leaving the pew. That sin that you have been holding on to for years. I know when I have sinned. I feel as though I have let my Father down. I feel the shame. Just one sin will destroy a man, but Jesus went further. He held every single sin of man that had been committed and was yet to be committed. It is any wonder He cried out to His Father? I can't imagine.

This brings me to understand that sin is sin. There is no great or lesser sin. Sin is ugly. Sin destroys. Sin is what took the life of our Savior. Sin began in the Garden of Eden, but it didn't stop there. Why haven't we learned yet? Sure, we are human, but too often we use that for an excuse. I know I will never be sinless, but I can come to the place in my life where I sin less. I can be more aware of my sin and what the actions of my sin does to those lives around me. Sin just doesn't effect us, it touches everyone.

If we are all honest I think we could easily say we make light of our sin. I know I do at times. I sin and toss up, "I'm so sorry, Lord. I shouldn't have said that. Please forgive me". Is that really what I need to be doing? Did anything change in me at that moment? I don't really think so, because not an hour later I'm doing the same thing. Sin is deep. It's something for us to understand the reasoning so that we can overcome that sin. When we make light of our sin, what are we doing to the cross? There was nothing light about what Jesus did for us. He gave His life.

The Lord is really speaking to my heart about the sin that I invite in and I don't want to make light of any sin that touches my life. If anything I want to bring light to my Savior. I want to share what He has done for me. He not only forgives me of my sin, but He gives me new life. He gives me strength to overcome my sin. He doesn't want us to wallow in sin. That isn't really living is it?

This story would be sad if it ended here, but there is more. Our lives don't have to be filled with sin. At the cross we can find Salvation. We can find forgiveness. Jesus wraps us in His grace and remembers our forgiven sin no more. It's through Jesus that we find new life. Sin brings forth death. Salvation springs forth life. New life. Abundant life through the grace and love of our Savior. The Savior who gave all for us. He took upon the sins of the world so that we could have life. Eternal life with the Father.

It is my prayer that you too see the cross differently. I pray you can come to the cross and seek Salvation through the Savior who followed the will of His Father. This will took Jesus to the cross and beyond. Our life doesn't have to end at the cross. Our life begins at the cross. Lay it all down before the Savior. Remain until He lifts you from the darkness that has overtaken your life. Jesus is life giving.

This has been such a powerful awakening for me. To really see the cross and to have a greater understanding brings me closer than ever before to my Savior. Seek Him today. Go to the cross with your burdens and you will be met by the Savior.

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting Him, He endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now He is seated in the place of honor beside God's throne. Think of all the hostility He endured from sinful people; then you won't become weary and give up. After all, you have not yet given your lives in your struggle against sin." Hebrews 12:1-4


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