Beyond The Cross

April 3, 2010 in Sovereign Grace Ministries

Beyond The Cross

(submitted by a reader via email)

Easter is an amazing weekend for Christians for various reasons.  For many it is a very sober reminder of the innocent life that was scorned, ridiculed, beaten and left on the cross to die as the ultimate expression of God’s love for the world.  For many it is a time of celebration as we shout out “He is risen” in which the forces of evil were conquered for all eternity as Christ was resurrected from the dead.  For many, it is about their annual pilgrimage to attend a church service in remembrance and honor of the Lord Jesus and His ultimate act of sacrifice on our behalf.

As I think about Christ, the cross and the sacrifice of His life as payment for the sins of the world, I can’t help but think about the glorious life he has for those who believe as a result of the cross.  So many Christians seem to never get beyond the cross to enjoy the fullness of life in Christ experiencing His kingdom; righteous, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.  It is difficult for many to believe that God has made them perfect; that we have been made complete needing nothing else to satisfy righteousness; that we have been made righteous (our condition is made totally acceptable to God).

Being that we have been made complete and righteous in Him, we have entry to the glorious life in His kingdom; instructed to seek first His kingdom and His righteousness.   We have been transferred from the kingdom of darkness into His kingdom of light now part of His chosen race, His Holy nation, His royal priesthood, His own possession.   In Him we are holy – that is, set apart for His exclusive purpose and pleasure.   The Bible says deny ourselves and take up our cross and follow Him.   We take up our cross by faith as, “We have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer we who live, but Christ lives in us; and the life which we now live in the flesh we live by faith in the Son of God, who loved us and gave Himself up for us” (Gal 2:20).   We have become united with Him in the likeness of His death and now in the likeness of His resurrection; and as Christ ascended to the right hand of the Father, so we too are seated with Him in the heavenlies.

No longer do we need to live in fear trying to preserve or protect our lives.  Now we have confidence in Him to lose ourselves (risking all for Him) for His sake that results in experiencing the abundant life as part of His kingdom.

I see so many Christians still living at the cross trying to clean themselves up; rid themselves of their sin and iniquities somehow trying to make their previous selves respectable.   The Bible says reckon that old man dead and get on with the life in His kingdom as His display or expression of His glory in the earth.   The gospel of His kingdom is not just payment for our sin but it is liberty and freedom in Him, and never again to subject ourselves to a yoke of slavery.

His payment as a ransom for us is the ticket to the life, purpose and mission of His kingdom.   As we have been justified, we have been glorified and are the expression of His glory in the earth – His compassion, graciousness, mercy, kindness, love, faithfulness and forgiveness in the world.   We are His Ekklesia (His Church), the called-out ones, that we would proclaim Him as Lord of lords and King of kings.   As we worship and honor the Lord Jesus Christ this Good Friday and Easter weekend in remembrance of His life that was given as payment for our sin, let us also celebrate His life and His kingdom “Beyond the Cross.”

HAPPY EASTER

© 2010, Kris. All rights reserved.