The Cross
Written by Jay Yeager
Friday, 10 June 2011 16:16

The Cross 

“But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ…” (Galatians 6:14).


“But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God” (I Corinthians 1:23-24).


“For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified” (I Corinthians 2:2).


The cross, the tree, crucifixion is certainly a negative among many people, but Paul would write by inspiration, I will glory in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. What is it about the cross that as Christians:

  1. We glory in it
  2. We preach it
  3. We know Christ crucified

Beloved, in this lesson we will examine why members of the church of Christ cherish the cross of Christ.


God chose the path of the cross to save man

God could have chosen anything he wanted, but the route that would make it possible for your salvation and mine would go through Calvary. Through the Bible we are allowed to see the reason God chose the cross.

  1. A sacrifice – an offering for sin (Isaiah 53:10). Only one would be needed (Hebrews 10:12).
  2. Atonement – reconciled unto God (Romans 5:11; II Corinthians 5:18-21). Jesus gave his life as a ransom for many (Matthew 20:28).
  3. Blood would be required (the seriousness of sin) for the remission of sins (Hebrews 9:22).
  4. The sacrifice would have to be innocent, spotless without blemish, not a bone broken (Numbers 9:12; I Peter 1:19).

 Those were the requirements

An animal could not meet those requirements, their blood would be insufficient (Hebrews 10:3-4), neither would mortal man (Ecclesiastes 7:20; Romans 3:23). It would take more than this earth had to offer. Heaven would have to send this sacrifice.

 The path that God choose would not be easy to travel

  1. Rejection (Isaiah 53:3; John 1:11).
  2. Betrayal (Psalms 41:9; Matthew 26:14-15).
  3. The cursed tree (Acts 5:30; 10:39; 13:29; Galatians 3:13; I Peter 2:24)
  4. Death (Isaiah 53:8; Hebrews 2:9).

Someone would have to travel that path, not an ignorant journey, but knowing full well how it would end. Who would love enough to travel that path?

 An exchange would have to occur

Beloved, outside of Jesus, all that we know about heaven has been provided by those who have had a glimpse of it:

  1. The apostle Paul was taken into the third heaven. While he was not permitted to speak of it (II Corinthians 12:2-4) yet, whatever he saw created a longing in him that would enable him to say; “For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain” (Philippians 1:21).

Note: Paradise is used two different ways in the Bible.

  1. Hades (Luke 23:43; 16:23; Acts 2:29; 31)

    2.   Heaven (Revelation 2:7; 22:2)


The apostle John after seeing and writing about what he was allowed to view of heaven said; “…Even so, come, Lord Jesus” (Revelation 22:20).


Jesus was at home there “For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich” (II Corinthians 8:9). Beloved, you know what Jesus left heaven to face: Rejection, betrayal and death. Of course that would require a physical body, an exchange of heaven for this present world.

 Deity would take human form

“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:5-8).


That Deity would enter into the womb of a virgin to be born of a woman is amazing enough (Genesis 3:15; Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:23; Galatians 4:4), but that he became a man to travel the path God laid out to be the Saviour of the world is humbling. Jesus knew what we have learned (Acts 2:23):

  1. His body would go into the grave, his soul into Hades (Psalms 16:10; Acts 2:29; 31)
  2. He would cry out, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Psalms 22:1; Matthew 27:46). For an insight read Habakkuk 1:13; II Corinthians 5:21
  3. “…They pierced my hands and my feet” (Psalms 22:16; Mark 15:24-25)
  4. They gambled for his garments (Psalms 22:18; John 19:23-24)
  5. They mocked him; “He trusted on the Lord that he would deliver him: let him deliver him…” (Psalms 22:7-8; Matthew 27:39-43).
  6. He commended his soul unto God (Psalms 31:5; Luke 23:46)
  7. Not a bone broken (Psalms 34:20; Numbers 9:12; John 19:33-36; I Corinthians 5:7).
  8. Betrayed by a friend (Psalms 41:9; Matthew 26:14-15)
  9. For thirty pieces of silver (Zechariah 11:12; Matthew 26:15; the selling price of a slave (Exodus 21:32)
  10. Numbered with the transgressors (Isaiah 53:12; Matthew 27:38)
  11. He would offer no defense (Isaiah 53:7-8; Matthew 27:11-14)
  12. His side would be pierced (Zechariah 12:10; John 19:34)

Jesus knew in application, this is meant for me, and he came anyway! Who would love enough to travel that path? Only one answer, Jesus Christ our Lord. I know… as death by crucifixion drew nearer, so did the apprehension (John 12:27). In the garden there was a plea made and tears were shed (Luke 22:42-44). But listen please, Jesus voluntarily went to Calvary, and when Pilate claimed to have that power, Jesus dispelled that notion immediately (John 19:10-11). No one could take his life, he would lay it down of himself (John 10:18).


I can tell you why members of the church of Christ:

  1. Preach Christ crucified (I Corinthians 1:23)
  2. Determine not to know any thing save Christ and him crucified (I Corinthians 2:2)
  3. Glory in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ (Galatians 6:14)

Because Jesus traveled that path to make salvation a possibility for every soul (Hebrews 2:9). If you want to know the depth of God’s love, look at Jesus Christ his only begotten Son (John 3:16; I John 4:7-10). If you want to see the depth of sin, look at Jesus on the cross of Calvary (I Peter 3:18; Romans 5:8; 10; 12).


Glory in the cross? You bet we will. “Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed” (I Peter 2:24).


Jesus willingly died for us, that we might have the right to live for him. He forces none, but he invites all (Matthew 11:28-30). Will you come to him in humble obedience?

  1. You must hear the word (Romans 10:17)
  2. You must believe the gospel (Mark 16:15-16)
  3. You must repent of your past sins (Acts 17:30)
  4. You must confess Christ before men (Romans 10:10)
  5. You must be baptized for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38)
  6. You must live faithful unto death (Revelation 2:10)