This podcast covers Lesson 3 of the Graceful Living Bible Study.
The Gifts of the Cross, Part 1
As a direct result of Christ’s finished work on the cross, our relationship with God is changed because of our faith in Jesus Christ. This change is described by six terms that are sometimes called the “words of the cross.”
Each one of these 6 words answers a different question about our relationship with God. When you put them all together, you will never be the same once you see all that Jesus Christ has done for you. They are gifts of the cross for us.
Word of the Cross #1 is Propitiation. It means that “God’s holy wrath against sin is fully satisfied.”
- God's wrath is His decision to preserve His creation by destroying whatever would destroy it—sin and evil. Just like you destroy viruses invading your safe home environment.
- Our loving God took action. God presented Christ as a sacrifice of propitiation for our sins, a word that means to be appeased, to be satisfied. Therefore, God’s holy wrath against all sin is fully satisfied by Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross. Because of that, God is able to extend mercy to every believer in Christ. Romans 3:25; Romans 5:9
- When anyone puts their faith in Jesus Christ, they are saved from the wrath of God against sin. You get this by faith.
- Because you’ve trusted Christ and are now found in Christ, you can know and live with confidence that God is fully satisfied…no longer angry at your sin—ever!
- And, that truth should motivate you to be a grace-giver to anyone who has angered you. You can be a grace-giver like God.
Word of the Cross #2 is Reconciliation. It means that “our relationship with God is restored.”
- All people have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. Before Christ came, we were alienated from God—having a broken relationship with our Creator. Romans 3:23
- But our God did something about that! God restored our broken relationship with Him by reconciling us to Himself through Jesus’s death on the cross. It’s complete reconciliation, never to be broken again. Colossians 1:20-22
- Because of His death on the cross, Jesus became the bridge for you to go directly to God, to be in His presence, not waving from afar.
- Because you’ve trusted Christ and are now found in Christ, you can know and live with confidence that your relationship with God is restored…no longer broken because of sin and guilt! Forever. God has taken away anything that separated you from Him—your sins, your failures, your mistakes. And, God declares His arms open to you.
Word of the Cross #3 is Redemption. It means that you are “purchased out of bondage to sin and released into freedom to serve God.”
- Every human born on this planet is born into bondage to the kingdom of darkness and sin as our slave master.
- If you know anything about slavery, there are only two ways out. Either die or be bought by someone who then sets you free.
- In Mark 10:45, Jesus declared that He came to give His life as a ransom for many—to pay the purchase price out of our slavery to sin with His blood. But, more than that, we have been released into freedom to serve God with our bodies and souls in obedience to Hm.
- As an extension of His love and His purpose for us, God rescues us from the dominion of darkness and from all wickedness. He does this to release us to be purified as a people that are His very own, eager to do what is good, and to serve Him as His representative to others. Colossians 1:13; Titus 2:14
- He rescues us from this earthly body with sin still assaulting us and releases us at death when He gives us a new, perfect body, fashioned for life in heaven with God. 2 Corinthians 5:1-10
- Redemption means you are the possession of a loving, merciful God and can live in the security of your freedom from bondage to sin because a greater power than sin moves in—the Holy Spirit. He sets you free from the power of that old slave master to become what God intended you to be.
- The moment you trusted in Christ as your Savior, you were set free from being a slave to sin in your life. God’s Holy Spirit lives in you and makes it possible for you to say “no” to any sinful thoughts and behaviors. He gives you the freedom to serve God with your body, mind, tongue, eyes and hands. You are no longer a slave to sin. It has lost its grip on you. Turn to God’s power within you to resist that old slave master calling on you.
- You can know and live with confidence that you have the freedom to live a life that pleases God in every way because you are now released…no longer in bondage to sin. Redemption is a gift of the cross we receive by faith in Christ.
All of these gifts are yours, dear believer! Because of Christ’s finished work on the cross, you receive wonderful gifts by faith in Him. Propitiation, reconciliation, and redemption are treasures given by our loving God to us who believe.
Let Jesus satisfy your heart with His grace so that your life overflows with His grace every day. You will experience a life of freedom and joy!
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