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org/ URFM is a Spiritual Teaching and Christian Counseling ministry Matthew 28:19-20, 2 Timothy 2:2

The POWER of the CROSS


(21 January 2014) Moto: 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 (1 Corinthians 1:18). My wife and I were having our devotion this morning and the cross was brought again to the forefront of our minds. None of us are gifted musically but, whenever it is possible, we like to listen to worship songs. Sometimes we even try to sing these powerful songs together with the professionals. This morning we found on YouTube FROM the INSIDE OUT a collection of good worship songs. From this particular collection one particular piece ministered to our hearts. That songs was Lead us to the CROSS. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_24IdbJ0Tw If you listen to and watch it carefully you will notice that at one point into the song there is an image with three crosses. This was the tipping point for me. We know that when our Lord Jesus was crucified two robbers were crucified with Him as well. Matthew writes, At that time two robbers were crucified with Him, one on the right and one on the left (Matt. 27:38). This image is powerful! Think about the fact that on the hill of Golgotha the place called the Place of a Skull (John 19:17) were three crosses. Do you see this? Jesus hanged on the middle cross and on His left side and His right side there were two criminals. Doctor Luke gives us a very important detail which for whatever reasons the other gospel writes does not mention it. One criminal, (I am assuming it was on Jesus left side), mocked Him saying: Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us! (Luke 23:39). What is interesting is that the other criminal, (I am assuming he was hanging on the right side of Christs), had a different attitude about the situation. He rebukes his friend saying: Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong (Luke 23:40-41). Two things I would like to you to notice here: First is that the criminal on the right side repented he admitted urfm.org/, (734) 972-5717, valy@urfm.org
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Advanced Discipleship Training


Christian Discipleship and Spiritual Growth & Maturity that he is being punished for his wrong deeds. The second thing is that he believed in Jesus he confessed his faith in Christ. And he was saying, Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom! (Luke 23:42). If you pause for a moment and think about it you will realize that this is powerful stuff! The attitude of one of the criminals made all the difference in the universe. Think about it He became the first fruit of the Cross. He was saved. Jesus said to this criminal: Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise (Luke 23:43). What a powerful illustration of salvation by grace alone through faith alone because of Christ alone. But why is this passage so magnificent to us? Very simple, at every given point in Gods economy there are three different crosses: The CROSS of Christ, my CROSS (your cross), and the CROSS of someone else (a spouse, a brother or a sister, a neighbor, a friend, or a stranger). Jesus is the only ONE who suffered unjustly. He is the Lamb of God. Christ is the Redeemer. At that particular point in our lives is extremely important to realize that we have a choice we have a decision to make regarding the CROSS my cross or your cross vs. Christs CROSS. We can declare out loud that: we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this MAN has done nothing wrong and, based on this unchanging reality, decide to accept the suffering with a good and positive attitude. Or we can kick and scream and throw a tantrum mocking the Lamb of God by saying contentiously: Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us! The choice is ours. But the difference between the two attitudes is like day and night. Can we see now how powerful de CROSS is? Not only that by it we have been saved, but, in my opinion, it is even more importantly after we have been saved. This is precisely what Paul writes: 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 (1 Corinthians 1:18). Can we comprehend now why the cross is the power of God for those who are saved? No wonder that the Word warns us that by our words we will be condemned or we will be saved. Matthew writes, For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned (Matt. 12:37). Therefore lets choose life. Give heed to the Scriptures: See, I have set before you today life and prosperity, and death and adversity; I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. So choose life in order that you may live, you and your descendants (Deut. 30:15, 19). I pray and I hope that the image of the three crosses is going to be vivid in our minds every time we are at the crossroads and facing our crosses. Lets be reminded that there is power in the CROSS. Are you facing a facet of the cross in your life today? What would your attitude be? Please feel free to share I would like to hear your thoughts With LOVE in Christs SERVICE,

Valy Vaduva
Spiritual Mentor / Life Coach urfm.org/, (734) 972-5717, valy@urfm.org
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