So we find the entire Jewish religious practice to be a picture of Christ. It isn’t simply that Jesus acted out a few isolated predictions from the Old Testament. It is that their entire culture was predicated on the coming of a Messiah who would be our savior through His own sacrifice. Their whole culture was law and gospel, morals and blood atonement.
In every case, the question is this: is your salvation final? Are you eternally loved, forever accepted? Are there any conditions to your favor and acceptance by the Father? The cross of Christ declares that our judgement is complete and finished. Jesus Himself declared from the cross, that it is finished. You are now the one in the judgement seat, and God is on trial. Was He right, or was He wrong? Is the cross of Christ sufficient to save you? What deed of yours, good or bad, will you place above His death for you?
The fact that Lordship Salvation proponents interpret the sayings of Jesus in a way that puts them at odds with the writings of Paul should be a huge red flag. When Paul specifically uses the word “gospel” (Greek – euaggelion, or happy word), he says it is the power of God for salvation, not a […]
Sometimes I wonder how I am part of the same family as my wonderful sons. I grew up very disinterested in sports; I was proud to be a bit of an egghead and a geek and a musician. They are consumed with football, basketball, intense workouts, and the like. They play sports-oriented video games and […]
Propitiation, the substitutionary sacrifice of Jesus for our sins, is the central and primary doctrine of Christianity. The cross of Christ is meaningful and powerful because the propitiation is true. Our relationship to Christ’s propitiation on the cross is going to drive our walk and our teaching and our evangelism and our assurance and our relationships and everything else about us. There is nothing more important to get straight in your mind than Christ’s propitiatory death on the cross.
The wrath of God is a very good thing. The wrath of God says that we matter. The wrath of God says that we are important. We may try to work it out that the fear of God means “reverent awe”, but in reality when we read that Jesus went crazy in the temple and threw over the tables and drove out the sellers, we love it. We need a fearsome God, a God to whom things deeply matter. Own this: you love that God has wrath.
We have in the cross, the clearest and most obvious fingerprint of God. He made this up, and He executed it by His own sovereign power. You yourself did not make this up, you would never have made it up. There is a strange comfort in saying that the whole thing seems a little alien and creepy, because it means we didn’t invent it. No human invented your salvation.
There is a hole in our gospel because we are ashamed of the cross. We want to make the root Christian message into something we do for God. The gospel is actually the message that God has done something for us. All of this talk about sin and wrath and blood and crosses is a bit embarrassing. We want to get on with the practical stuff. I’m here to say that we need to give far more attention to what we have heard — that we have such a great salvation (Hebrews 2:1-3)!
17 “Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. 18 For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. 19 Whoever then annuls […]
It’s New Year’s! It’s a new year, and I’m always excited about that. This year is especially a time for me to set new directions, new career paths, new relationships, and new patterns and disciplines. However, I’ve learned about myself that the cliche can be true, that these things last only so long. You have […]