I love a good mystery. My favorite mystery writer is Mary Higgins Clark, and I’ve managed to collect all but a few of her entire works. But the greatest mystery ever told is why God chose to redeem mankind through Christ’s death on the cross. This week we’ll explore the mystery of the cross – foolishness to the unsaved but the power of God to those who claim Him as Lord and Savior (I Cor. 1:18).
What the Cross Tells Us about God
For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength.
1 Cor. 1:25
Recently my pastor challenged each of his Wednesday night Bible study class members to present his or her interpretation of the meaning of the cross. For example, did we agree with the penal substitution theory, or the ransom theory, or the victory theory—to name a few.
In case some of you are rolling your eyes right now, let me encourage you to read on. How you feel about the cross is the most important decision you’ll ever make. In fact, it’s a matter of life and death! Your opinion on this topic makes the difference for every daily decision, every thought, every action. It determines how you live your life.
So I took up his challenge. In the process of formulating my answer, I had to deal with the five issues represented by the Daily Dose titles for this week. So let’s jump in. What does Jesus dying on the cross tell us about God the Father? First, it tells us God loves us so much He was willing to sacrifice His only Son to save us from the penalty of sin (John 3:16-18). Why does He love us that much? Because we are His children, made in His image. Read 1 John 3:1. Yes, right now!
Second, it tells us God had a plan. When His original intention for fellowship with mankind was marred by the sin of Adam and Eve, He set His plan in motion. You see, our sin wasn’t a surprise that caught God off guard. He’d anticipated it from the foundation of the world (1 Cor. 2:7). Paul said our salvation was given to us in Christ Jesus “before time began” (1 Tim. 1:9).
Third, it tells us God’s plan worked. “For all have sinned” (Rom. 3:23) but “the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 6:23). Through Christ’s sacrifice, we are adopted “sons” and restored us into full fellowship with Him (Gal. 4:4-7).
God’s plan was so foolish, it was wise! It was wiser than all of mankind’s wisdom. If you share God’s plan with a relative, co-worker, or friend, and if that person says it all sounds silly, then she is just being a foolish human! (See 1 Cor. 1:18.) Don’t let her attitude stop you. Once the Spirit grabs hold of her, He will reveal God’s truth—the truth of His love.
Loving God, who first loved us,