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Tuesday: Boasting in the Cross — 14 Comments

  1. Before we get caught in all our daily activities, we must take some time to cherish this ultimate demonstration of God's love for us. The cross is nothing! What counts is the attitude! What an agony to go through it! And worst, to die for people who despised you... What a pain! Dying for love and not being loved back! Who is this? What kind of Power is this?

    • Long before the cross, there were many who loved the Lord with all their heart, some even being translated to heaven without seeing death, and some resurrected and taken home to be with their God. While few understood the meaning of this death as it was taking place, observe the dying thief, the Roman centurion, and the light that came to Nicodemus as the words Jesus spoke to him some 3 years prior now had a clear and vital meaning, and the "teacher in Israel" now openly responded to the grace "given in Christ Jesus before the world began". Jesus also knew the path that lay before Peter who would die for Him in like manner, and perhaps saw you and me, finding Life through Him.

      Perhaps many, even most, despise Him, but He counts as precious jewels each of those who take up their cross and follow Him; our Example in life and that death death to self.

  2. As the author of this quarterly states so well in Tuesday, July 18, in his comment on Galatians 2:16:
    “We are not justified on the basis of our faith but on the basis of Christ’s faithfulness for us, which we claim for ourselves through faith.
    Christ did what every individual has failed to do, and that is: He alone was faithful to God in everything He did. Our hope is in Christ’s faithfulness, not our own.”

    God in Christ condescended to starkly display the character of his love to the world in the face that all the lying Adversary and Hell could muster against him. As Paul wrote in his letter to the Philippians 2:7-8, NET:
    “[Christ] emptied himself by taking on the form of a slave, by looking like other men, and by sharing in human nature.
    He humbled himself, by becoming obedient to the point of death—even death on a cross!”

    The words penned by Isaac Watts capture this sentiment well:
    1 When I survey the wondrous cross
    on which the Prince of glory died,
    my richest gain I count but loss,
    and pour contempt on all my pride.
    2 Forbid it, Lord, that I should boast
    save in the death of Christ, my God!
    All the vain things that charm me most,
    I sacrifice them through his blood.
    3 See, from his head, his hands, his feet,
    sorrow and love flow mingled down.
    Did e'er such love and sorrow meet,
    or thorns compose so rich a crown?
    4 Were the whole realm of nature mine,
    that were a present far too small.
    Love so amazing, so divine,
    demands my soul, my life, my all.

    As Christians we are witnesses to this awesome display of God’s love both now and for eternity:
    “Great and marvelous are Your works, Lord God Almighty!
    Just and true are Your ways, O King of the saints!
    Who shall not fear You, O Lord, and glorify Your name?
    For You alone are holy.
    For all nations shall come and worship before You,
    For Your judgments have been manifested.” Revelation 15:3-4, NKJV

    Judgements now and for all eternity in favour of his saints.

    One more thought. "Great and marvelous are Your works, Lord God Almighty!" Your works, not our works. It is ALL about Jesus. And for that, I am very, very thankful.

  3. Boasting in the Cross
    To Paul, the words “cross” and “glory” do not go together but are direct opposites because by that time there was not a more humiliating, shameful way to be executed than the cross. It seemed much more logical to glory in your good showing in the flesh, instead of the cross. According to his principle, glory was in the cross of Christ: God forbid, says he, that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, v. 14. By the cross of Christ here meant his sufferings and death on the cross. This was what the Jews stumbled at and the Greeks accounted foolishness; and the false teachers themselves, though they had embraced Christianity, yet were so far ashamed of it that in compliance with the Jews, and to avoid persecution from them, they were for mixing the observance of the law of Moses with faith in Christ, as necessary to salvation. But Paul had a very different opinion of it; he was so far from being offended at the cross of Christ, or ashamed of it, or afraid to own it, that he gloried in it; he desired to glory in nothing else, and rejected the thought of setting up anything in competition with it, This was the ground of all his hope as a Christian. This was the doctrine he resolved to preach; and, whatever trials his firm adherence to it might bring upon him, he was ready, not only to submit to them, but to rejoice in them.
    Unlike Paul who was a man of God’s spirit; as the world had no kindness for him, so neither had he any great regard to it; he had got above both the smiles and the frowns of it, and had become as indifferent to it as one who is dying out of it, we on the other hand have joined the false teachers who are men of a worldly temper, who their chief concern is about their secular interests, and therefore they accommodate worldly practices.

    NOTE; The cross of Christ is a good Christian's chief glory, and there is the greatest reason why we should glory in it, for to it we owe all our joys and hopes. This is the mind that all Christians should be laboring after; and the best way to attain it is to converse much with the cross of Christ. The higher esteem we have of him the meaner opinion shall we have of the world, and the more we contemplate the sufferings our dear Redeemer met with from the world the less likely shall we be to be in love with it

    • Hello Pamela,

      Your post triggered a few thoughts in my mind.

      The glory of the cross is that the Word would more than willing choose to become human flesh, and then while in this flesh, desire to display his love (the will of his Father) regardless of provocation, abuse and the prospect of a terrible death. The glory of the Christian is that he would prostrate himself and worship such a god. To the mind of the world, this made about as much sense as worshipping some stupid donkey-headed god dying on a cross—a real Rambo-type god would never allow himself to be abused, let alone sacrifice himself in such a way.

      Although the Jews were despised by the Romans and Greeks, at least the religion they practiced made some sort of sense: They sacrificed to a god to appease his wrath when they offended him or to buy his favour to get what they wanted.

      I have often puzzled at the use of the word “propitiation” in the Christian testament: Romans 3:25; Hebrews 2:17; 1 John 2:2 and 4:10. Who is being propitiated by the death of Christ? I have come to think that Christ’s death is a propitiation to us, not to God, because God sent his Son as an extravagant gift to the world as a way of convincing the world of his love for them.

      Those who worship at the foot of the cross have accepted God’s propitiation, believing that he has told them the truth about himself, that is, that he loves them at all cost. This is the gospel (good news). Because they have sold out to Christ, the world cannot buy them. They are in a sense now dead to the world and alive to God.

      • By repenting and believing the Gospel, which is to accept Jesus as the Lamb of God who takes away my sin, and to take up my cross in following His example. .

  4. In order for us to have that zeal to boast in the Cross we must become of that mind which Paul had achieved. "I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ" Yes until we submits our self,possession ( including our children ) and our lust for the things of flesh by disconnecting from from them. Meaning if we should loose it all we would be able to say like Job despite of loosing everything my redeemer liveth,Instead of grieving and being angry.Then and only then can we truly glory/ boast in the cross

  5. This is the most precious encouragement and the most important lesson for every soul that is trying to serve God. In the words of
    Jeremiah the prophet God says ". . . let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the Lord. . ." Before the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ man's greatness is absolutely nothing. "But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord". We behold in the Cross of Jesus Christ our efficiency and unending source of power. He is our sure guarantee and secure treasure in the eternal life. No wonder Paul says "But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world." Calvary is the declaration of the supremacy of the kingdom God and the salvation of mankind: "Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Messiah...". Calvary signifies victory over dark forces of this world. Let the one who glory glory in His victory. Glory in the name of him who says "And I, when I am lifted[exalted] up from the earth, will draw all people to myself."

  6. Surely ,what shall we as sinful human beings doomed to eternal death boast in??? Except in the cross where Christ our saviour bought our salvation with His precious blood 1cor6:20;7:23 and this salvation by God's grace is God's gift; there's nothing on our part i.e not of works , less anybody should boast Eph2:8-10. But God foreordained Christ before the foundations of the world and manifested in this last times so that by Him we believe in God that raised Him and give Him glory; that our faith and hope might be in God 1pet1:18-21

  7. Calvary is the culmination of the gospel. Without it, our hope will have been a full fluff. We live in a world where pride and arrogance is on the ascendancy- people boast about what they have . The power,fame,money, degrees and mansions. Christians can not be victims of this. We are to glory in the cross of Christ which sets us free. We should boast about the fact that we know the Lord. We shouldn't be ashamed to be called Christians. And perhaps, most importantly, the cross should guide our path each day.

  8. The word glory as related to God in the Old Testament bears with it the idea of greatness of splendor. In the New Testament, the word translated “glory” means “dignity, honor, praise and worship”. Therefore we can say to glorify God means to acknowledge His greatness and to give him honor by praising and worshiping Him. Furthermore, to “glory in the cross” is to give honor and praise for what the cross represents and not the physical “ shame of the cross “ Because of the cross grace and justification we sinner will not get what we truly deserve ( eternal death ) , if we hold unto his promise have faith and do his will we can have abundant life ( eternal life ).
    With that said I can say when God’s people adapt the blessings of the Fruit of the Spirit, when they refused to indulge in the lust of the flesh e.g. (lying stealing, hate covetousness, junkiness, Adultery, fornication) and keep the two greatest commandments which are to Love the Lord thy God with all thy heart and the neighbor as thy self they are giving Glory to the Cross. May God help us all as we strive to boast in the cross as Paul did may we also glory in the cross by living an exemplary that which Christ as commissioned us to do.

  9. Paul could be saying that the Judaizers probably do not have much confidence in the message of Christ’s sacrificial death and resurrection. They do not believe it in their hearts. To them, the message of the cross is foolishness - 1 Cor 1:18. Their interest in converts to circumcision is so that they (the Judaizers) would not be ridiculed, or even persecuted for this “foolish” belief. They are displaying selfish pride in how many converts they can convince.

    Paul, on the other hand, believes in the message of the cross, and is willing to suffer persecution, derision, and scorn for it. To Paul, the message of the cross is the power of God and hence the reason why he uplifts it, glories in it and proclaims its salvific benefits. 1 Cor 1:18.

    When Paul says he is “glorying in the cross” he could be saying that he is willing to stake his reputation, ministry and his own salvation on this message, even if it means persecution or death for him. He knows that he has no eternal life without Christ’s death on the cross, and the opportunity to rise with Him and walk in newness of life. Rom 6:4-8.

    For us today, that "glorying" could be the willingness to look odd and foolish in this modern world of sarcasm and ungodliness.

  10. I am looking for personal experiences. How can we manage the application of the sinful ways our individual lives must be exposed to. We have devoted a significant amount of time discussing Galatians 5:16-25, and all of the applications are not entirely clear, from many of our individual experiences. More than a few will be repeat offenders. There are still battles to be won and Satan wins much, much, too often. The hope that I and others plead for is that we have an advocate to sustain us during the times we fail. The words repentance and atonement are a significant part of the equation and application. For some, all is not cut and dried, as an old clique might indicate. What say you?


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