In light of this Easter season, let’s reflect on the cross, because it does something awesome in us.
Look at the very lives of the apostles… No one was “laying down his life” for Jesus… No one died for him while he was alive.
What was the cost on his life? 30 pieces of silver.
How many of us would hand Jesus over for 30 pieces of silver? All the riches of the world?
Yet, what was the cost for your life? His.
If you are struggling to truly experience unrelenting love in this life, look to the cross. If you are feeling worthless, look to the cross.
Your worth is measured in blood, and water, and splinters, and stripes, and nails, and spiritual isolation, separation, pain, and excruciating suffering. How much you are loved is measured in the same.
Therefore, our obedience to Jesus Christ, even in sharing in His sufferings, is done not out of guilt, but because we have been invited and empowered to do so. We need not say, “Well, if he suffered that much, maybe I should”. We need say, “In his suffering I am found to be truly loved, worthy enough to die for, and have been forgiven of my sins because of it. I am compelled to follow, not lacking anything.”
Jesus laid his life down for his friends. For us. He who was sold for 30 pieces of silver redeemed us with one life. His.
The disciples could later be crucified themselves because Jesus counted them and us worthy enough to spend his life on.
As we anticipate the promises of the resurrection, the promises of redemption in this life and the next, we are challenged to go and die. To hold fast to the cross, for dear life, knowing well what it cost God to make things right for us.
He is the rock upon which we stand, cleft for us, the one who took our shame upon himself so that we might be dressed in righteousness. The one who satisfied the wrath of God for those who brought it upon themselves, so that we might be atoned for and without blame before the Father.
Imagine all the wrath of the eternal God, the all-powerful God, completely holy, completely just which we accrued because of our sinful errors and corrupt hearts poured out upon one man, His only son.
What could we offer to equal? What song or hymn could we sing? What sum of money? What church building? What career? What success? What can we possibly bring in our hands to the cross but our lives?
We are compelled to obedience by His love. Will you follow?