Uncomfortable (S1) - Day 9

1 Corinthians 1:18
"The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God."
When he spoke of the Cross, Paul was a very courageous preacher. Why? Because as you can see, the Cross was not considered something that made much sense.

The question would sound like this: How can the gospel of Christ be a form of worldly wisdom when it proclaims a crucified leader in Jesus? Isn't such a proclamation foolishness regarding how we view the world and what counts as wisdom and knowledge? How can any of this make sense?

The gospel's message, this foolishness that includes a death on a cross, doesn't make sense unless you believe it. How does that work? How is it that you can believe something that doesn't make sense, but when you believe, it suddenly makes sense?

Again, we are dealing with the paradox of faith in Jesus. When things seem like they don't make sense, is when they come into view. When we believe, all is made clear. It makes not only perfect sense but divine sense. However, if you cannot bring yourself to believe or open your heart to the truth of the gospel, then you cannot grasp the very grace that God is giving.

And the truth is, this grace that is given is not cheap. To quote Bonhoeffer again:

"Wisdom or grace without the Cross is what is sold on the market like a cheapjack's wares. Cheap grace means justification of sin without the justification of the sinner, … forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline … the world goes on in the same old way … grace without the Cross, grace without Jesus Christ" (quoted in Thiselton 2000:157).

The Cross, as uncomfortable as it is, adds weight, gravity, and purpose to the ministry of Jesus. It was his way of paying our bills to sin; his sacrifice made our lives possible and our eternal lives attainable.

1. What has the Cross meant to you over the years?
2. How often do you think about the Cross of Christ? Just at Easter, or more often?
3. Would you have been willing to go to a Cross for others?
4. Why was it necessary for Christ to die on the Cross?

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