The Message of the Cross

The Message of the Cross

For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.  (1 Cor 1:18 NIV, underlining and emphasis added) 

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.  (Rom 1:16, emphasis added)

 . . .  but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness, 24 but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.  (1 Cor 1:23-25, emphasis added)

. . . because our gospel came to you not only in word, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction. You know what kind of men we proved to be among you for your sake.  (1 Thes 1:5 ESV, emphasis added)

The message of the cross is sometimes referred to as the:

  • Gospel of Christ (Rom 1:16)
  • Good News (1 Thes 3:6)
  • Power of God (1 Cor 1:23-25)
  • Wisdom of God (1 Cor 1:23-25)
  • Resurrection Gospel (1 Cor 15, entire chapter)

What is the message of the cross?  It is that God LOVES the world, and desires to be in RELATIONSHIP with each and every one of us.  Thanks to this truth, the Father God provided salvation to all mankind through Jesus Christ.

Jesus humbled himself in coming to earth as a newborn baby.  He grew up as a normal, human boy and learned the trade of carpentry.  He lived a sinless, perfect life serving His heavenly Father.  Jesus preached Good News, and demonstrated the love of His heavenly Father by performing signs, wonders, and miracles. 

Jesus displayed the need for continuous fellowship with His Father, as well as drawing apart for prayer.  He modeled forgiveness, wisdom, and walking in the Spirit for us all.

The symbol of the cross is an icon of grim human suffering and public humiliation.  Jesus’ suffering and subsequent death and resurrection are all part of the message of the cross.  In the light of Christ’s resurrection, there is restoration of hope, complete joy, and utter triumph.  Hallelujah!

Notice that the preaching of this gospel of salvation is always accompanied by the POWER of God.

The message of the cross proves the magnitude of the love that God has for mankind.

Not Ashamed

Not Ashamed

They looked to Him and were radiant, and their faces were not ashamed.  (Ps 34:5)

I will speak of Your testimonies also before kings, and will not be ashamed.  (Ps 119:46)

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.  (Rom 1:16)

For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.”  (Rom 10:11)

For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day.  (2 Tim 1:12)

One thing we learn from all of these passages is that faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ will never make us ashamed—nor should it!  The gospel of Jesus Christ is something that we should be honored to share with others, because it is our calling.

All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. (2 Cor. 5:18-20 – emphasis added)

This Scripture reminds us that we are ALL called as the Lord’s representatives.  It’s not only ministers or apostles that have this ministry of reconciliation and the role of Christ’s ambassadors—all of us believers do! Additional Bible verses that demonstrate this responsibility are Matthew 5:14-16, 1 Peter 3:15, Philippians 2:14-16, Colossians 4:5-6 and 1 Peter 2:9. 

Let’s take special note of the next passages that state that Jesus is not ashamed to call us His brethren, and that God is not ashamed to be called our God! 

For both He who sanctifies and those who are being sanctified are all of one, for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren . . . (Heb 2:11)

But now they desire a better, that is, a heavenly country.  Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.  (Heb 11:16)

Isn’t that wonderful and beautiful to be reminded of? 

Hebrews 2:11 additionally points out that the Sanctifier and the sanctified are united—bonded together!  We are our Beloved’s and He is ours.  (S.O.S. 6:3)  Some additional Scriptures to study are:  

  • John 6:56;
  • “He is the Vine and we are the branches” in John 15;
  • Colossians 1:27;
  • 1 John 4:13; and
  • Galatians 2:20.

In light of all of these confirmations of our union with Christ, let’s joyfully tell other people about our loving, merciful, and powerful Savior!  Remember that we will never be put to shame for being faithful ambassadors for His Kingdom.