Glory In The Cross
Intro: The word “glory” here means to boast or rejoice in. A lot of people are glorying in the wrong thing!
In our text, they were glorying in:
Their flesh – vs. 12 (their spirituality, suffering for Christ’s sake, for their “stand”, separation…)
The flesh of their followers – vs. 13 (their obedience to rules, regulations, compliance to guidelines)
Let me be clear – I believe in separation!! I believe in obeying God and His Word in EVERY area. Period.
Paul made it clear in vs. 17 that his walk with God left MARKS on his body. There is a price for living right.
But if the only reason we do it or practice it is so we can GLORY in it, then that is wrong! We should only glory in the CROSS of CHRIST.
Today, we see gold, silver, decorative crosses used as jewelry, decoration, etc. But really, the cross is a symbol of:
A. Sin – every sin that has ever been committed; past, present and future was there!
- Col. 2:14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;
- 2 Cor. 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
- Isaiah 53:12…and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
B. Suffering – beatings, crown of thorns, nails, thirst, exposure, loneliness, etc.
- Hebrews 2:9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
- 1 Peter 3:18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:
C. Shame – due to the condemnation; the company; the
- Heb. 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
So, how could such a symbol be something that Paul could glory in? How is it possible?
You and I can GLORY IN THE CROSS because of the…
I. Adversaries that it Defeated – it was a place of victory; triumph; fulfillment; accomplishment
A. Sovereigns and their Deceitfulness
Herod – Matt. 2:8 And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.
B. Spiritual Leaders and their Denials
John 10:24 Then came the Jews round about him, and said unto him, How long dost thou make us to doubt? If thou be the Christ, tell us plainly.
They tried to kill him numerous times throughout his ministry.
They made false accusations; denied who he was.
Even in his death, he proved them all wrong. That is reason to glory!
John 10:18 No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again.
C. Satan and his Demons
Col. 2:15 And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.
II. The Attention that it Demanded
A. The Prophecies Recorded – over 400 Messianic prophecies; 109 about the cross
- Psalm 41:9 foretells Judas’ betrayal
- Zechariah 11:12 predicts the payment Judas would receive (30 pieces of silver)
- Isaiah 53 spoke of His sacrificial death paying the price for the sins of all.
- Psalm 109:25 tells that He would be mocked by those who watched.
- Psalm 34:20 records the miracle that none of His bones were broken.
- Psalm 22:18 says that people would gamble for possession of His clothing.
- Psalm 31:5 gives the words that Jesus said when He committed His spirit into His Father’s hands.
- Isaiah 53:12 says that He would plead for the forgiveness of those who persecuted Him.
- Amos 8:9 records the darkness that would follow the death of the Messiah.
and the list goes on… We can glory in the cross because it was the focus of so much attention in prophecy
B. The People’s Remarks
History records the fact that thousands of criminals died violent deaths at the hands of the Roman Empire. Many of them died on the cross; convicted of a crime and punished for it. What made the cross of Christ so different? It was different because of the many statements made by the characters around the cross:
1. Pilate’s wife – had a dream; having nothing to do with this just man
2. Pilate – I find no fault in him
3. The crowd – let his blood be on us and on our children
4. The inscription – The King of the Jews
5. The thief – this man has done nothing amiss
6. The centurion – surely this was the Son of God
III. The Atonement that it Delivered
Rom. 5:11 And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.
A. It was a Perfect Atonement
- John 19:30 When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.
- Heb. 1:3 Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;
- Heb. 10:12 But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;
B. It was a Permanent Atonement
- John 6:37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.
- John 10: 28, 29 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand.
C. It was a Personal Atonement
- Heb. 2:9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.