“And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come” – Matthew 24:14
LIGHT FOR NOW: God’s goodness to mankind which is the good news of the gospel is seen in what He did in Christ in His death, burial and resurrection.
On the cross (as we saw in our previous study), Jesus is the Lamb of God; He is Jehovah’s lamb. His cry became our joy; His pain became our gain; His sorrow became our triumph; His wounds became our healing. He took our place and we took His place. God put all sin on Jesus to bear the consequences, hence never again would we bear them. All judgment is now on Him. Justice is meted out to a Holy Being; unholy men can now have access to God on his merits and not theirs. Paul echoes in Romans 5:8 and 10 saying, “But God commendeth his love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life”. So, what He did was not for Him, it was for us. Now, it is important to point out that the full story of man’s redemption does not end on the cross; Christ must stand in man’s place now and meet eternity’s demands. He must suffer for three days and three nights. We have sung “Lord because of me you gave up your life on the cross of Calvary shedding your blood for me”; we have not sung the word… On the cross, we have heard Jesus say “…it is finished” in John 19:30, we must put scriptures side-by-side to understand. He was not referring to redemptive work when he said “it is finished” and this we will examine patiently in our studies in subsequent days. Hear from the lips of Jesus as recorded by the Matthew’s and John’s synoptic, they read “For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth” (Matthew 12:40). “Then he said unto them, O fools and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: ought not Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into his glory? And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself” (Luke 24:25-27). He would not enter into His glory until the third day; hence, in the post text of Luke 24, He clarifies this (Luke 24:44-46). So, He must bear man’s separation for three days. He must go to where sinners go; He must be fully identified with man in the present and after life. Just as the killing of the spotless (sinless) animal on the Day of Atonement, the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross is only the beginning. As the blood of the animal must be taken before God under the law, on the cross Jesus was slain. God had left Him and would do so until all the demands are met. Only at this point would Jesus’ blood be offered. This grueling account is grim and almost mind-numbing… but therein lays our redemption. The death of Jesus provides legal grounds for the reconciliation of man with God. For the gospel is wrapped around what happened from the cross to the grave; from the place of the dead to the resurrection and onwards to the ascension to the throne. Hallelujah!
INSTRUCTION: Stay with the gospel.
PRAYER: Father, I declare that my eyes and minds are not shifted away from this message wherein I stand, in Jesus Name, Amen.
QUOTE: Redemption did not end on the cross, redemption began on the cross.
DAILY BIBLE READING: MORNING: JOHN CHAPTER 3 EVENING: ROMANS CHAPTER 5