Sermon No. 34 - THE CROSS OF JESUS CHRIST

By Douglas Amobi

The cross of Christ is the most wonderful and powerful demonstration of God's love, faith and hope for ALL creation. This is the spot where God reconciled man to God, both Jews and Gentile had equal access to God as he promised Abraham. Without the CROSS mankind is lost. The cross is a door and an authority and a passport for coming before the throne of grace. The cause of separation between God and men is SIN and the remedy to sin is the CROSS. Now read on and be set free form damnation. SIN AND DEATH IN THE WILDERNESS

During the journey of the children of Israel to the promised land in Numbers 21:4-9, they spoke against God and Moses. God sent fiery serpents to bite and kill those who sinned against his word and his prophet. This caused a lot of death among the children of Israel that sinned. The people came to Moses and pleaded with him, saying they had sinned against God and him by their speeches. They wanted Moses to pray unto God to take away the serpent from them.

THE SHADOW OF THE CROSS

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Deliverance and healing are a matter of choice because the way was made open and the price already paid; by Jesus the Christ. The serpent on the pole was God's design to save a disobedient people. Like today, some people in the wilderness with Moses sinned, were bitten by the serpent but refused to look at the image of the serpent hanging on a pole. God's plan to save them from the bite of the serpent was his own, but their own was to accept or perish. Many accepted and were healed; also many bitten refused to look, and they died in their sin and disobedience to God's instruction and solution. Today the serpent is still biting people through SIN and people are dying, even with Jesus Christ been lifted up on the CROSS OF CALVARY; that whosoever looks on him might be saved. The cross of Calvary has been over 2000 years yet people are still rejecting it and dying, like those who refused to look upon the serpent on the pole in the wilderness. The choice is yours, to look up to the cross of Christ and be saved or reject it and be damned to the lake of fire.

1st Corinthians 1:1-18

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Verse 8-9 reads, "and the Lord said unto Moses, make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole and it shall come to pass, that everyone that is bitten, when he looketh upon it shall live. And Moses made a serpent of brass and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived." This was a clear shadow of God's plan for the redemption of man from his continuous fall since Adam. All who were bitten by the serpent for speaking against God and Moses, when they looked up to the serpent on the pole were healed. This was God's mercy to that generation and was a shadow of the cross of Calvary where Jesus was crucified; and whosoever looked to the cross of Christ and the finished work was and will be saved.

THE CHOICE IS YOUR OWN

THE WORD OF GOD CHANGETH NOT

In St. John 3: 14-15, Jesus said, "and as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have ETERNAL LIFE." A look at the serpent in the wilderness healed the individual; and a accepting the cross of Christ gives you LIFE ETERNAL. The Lord told about his death on the cross and what it will do to those who dare to believe, the finished work at the cross. There was expectation in the wilderness at looking on the image of the serpent on the pole; healing was expected. The expectation of accepting the cross of Christ is eternal life.

IT TAKES FAITH AND ACTION

Hebrews 11:1 reads, "now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." God has always required faith of everyone that comes to him: for without faith, it is impossible to please God. In the wilderness when the serpent was biting and people were dying; the people spoke to Moses asking for help from God. Moses cried unto God and was instructed about the image of the serpent on the pole and the result it would yield when looked upon. Moses relayed the information of God to his people. To be bitten by the serpent in the wilderness, meant that the person had sinned in speaking evil against God and his prophet Moses (acknowledgement of sin was needed).

Numbers 21:4-9

Then the person must accept the word of God to be true, to his servant Moses (this is called BELIEVING). When you connect the bite of the serpent on you and the image of the serpent on the pole according to the word of Moses; and settle in your heart that it is possible for something to happen (called EXPECTATION). This was the evidence of things not seen. With expectation in the heart the person bit by the serpent lifted up his or her face to LOOK upon the lifeless image of the serpent, that Moses made according to God's instruction, (this is ACTION that goes with faith). Those who looked up on the image of the serpent were healed; this is the reward and substance of FAITH in the word of God.

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THE CROSS OF CALVARY

There is only one cross that gives LIFE, and that is the cross of Christ. The serpent image of Moses was a shadow of the real cross. The serpent was a lifeless image, but God honored his word to those who looked at it, when smitten by the fiery serpent for their sin. BUT the cross of Calvary carried the only begotten Son of God that took the form man. He was not a lifeless image but the living God himself in the form of man. Read Luke 23:31 and you will see the green tree with life, and who is the dry tree. Jesus was scourged (whipped, for by his stripes we are healed), he was also bleeding. Then they nailed him to the cross (imagine the pain, agony and helplessness that your sin and mine have brought upon God in the form of man). Fancy the abuse they poured upon him, and yet the bible said in Hebrews 12:2 "who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross." From the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the gate to forgiveness of sin, healing, overcoming the powers of darkness and eternal life became open and accessible to whosoever shall call upon the Lord in faith with action. The cross is the solution to all human problems of sin, sickness and death.

The cross of Jesus Christ is the only cross that has the solution to all that Adam lost to the devil. The cross does not know color of skin, rich or poor, Jew or gentile, male or female and young or old. All have equal passage at the cross. Nobody has any excuse for not believing the Gospel of the cross of Jesus Christ. Read 1st Corinthians 1:18 "for the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God." WHAT IS THE CROSS OF CHRIST TO YOU? WHAT IS HIS BLOOD TO YOU? THE CROSS HAS TO DO WITH LIVE AFTER DEATH, BELIEVETH THOU THIS? THE CROSS SAVES, THE CROSS JUDGES, YOUR CHOICE.