From that time forth began Jesus to shew unto His disciples how that He must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priest and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day. Then said Jesus unto His disciples, If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
In our scripture texts we have salvation, sacrifice and service that Jesus displayed on the cross. That said, let's look at each-salvation is what Jesus provided through His atoning death redeeming man back to God the Father so that all who believe in Him and accept His atonement in faith shall be saved. What salvation means to every believer is that Christ paid our sin-debt as man lacked the ability to pay his own sin-debt. Christ our Savior willingly gave His life as a ransom for many-all who believe.
Sacrifice-Christ made the one-time sacrifice to atone man's sins. Christ's sacrifice supersedes the sacrifices made by earthly priests in that Christ knew no sin whereas the earthly priests' sins had to be forgiven before they could make atonement for the people. Earthly priests could not forgive sin whereas Jesus forgave sin. These questions come to mind, What sacrifices are we willing to make as an expression of gratitude for Christ's atoning work on our behalf? Are welling to deny ourselves for the sake of the gospel of Christ?
The Service component of the cross, which calls for self denial where Christ denied Himself as He served His Father unto the cross and is now seated at the right hand of the Father where He continues to serve making intercessions for mankind. Christ is our perfect example of a servant who came to this earth not to be served, but to serve, and serve He did. Christ met the needs (physical and spiritual) of the people while here on earth and continues to do so while in heaven as His Spirit lives in every believers. Believers, a line-item in our service record should read self denial.
Do you see the three S's of the cross?
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