I have a necklace that I wear a lot. Sometimes, like when my son has been fiddling with it, it gets all tangled up. Like this.
One day he brought it to me and said, “Mommy, here’s your cross.” I looked at it and then it hit me. This is exactly how the cross used to look.
As an Adventist, sure, I believed that Jesus died on the cross and rose again. Of course! The problem was all of the other things that I simultaneously believed that obscured the profound significance of the cross.
Believing in the investigative judgement obscured my view of the cross.
Believing that the cross was only the first phase in atonement obscured the significance of “It is finished.” (John 19:30)
Believing that His sacrifice only opened the door to the possibility of being saved impacted the meaning of the cross for my salvation.
My focus on Jesus keeping the Sabbath even in death missed the point…entirely.
These beliefs were tangled and wrapped tightly around the cross, so much so that it was almost beyond recognition. No amount of wiggling and shaking on my part could untangle me from these beliefs. I didn’t even know, much less accept, that I had a distorted view of Calvary. I didn’t even know to wiggle.
It was God, through His Word, that untangled some beliefs and completely cut off others so that I could clearly appreciate what He did for me on that old rugged cross.
When Jesus died on the cross, He took on ALL of my sin, all of my sinful nature, and all of the sin that I would commit in my lifetime. All of it was paid for and when I believed I began to consciously operate in a new economy, a New Covenant economy. That, my friends, is GREAT news.
“My chains are gone, I’ve been set free!” 1 I’m not on probation. I’ve been set free!
This song (The Lamb has Overcome by Travis Cottrell) has been ringing in my head all week.
“The Lamb has overcome,
The Lamb has overcome,
The Lamb has overcome
And we are free. Forever free!
If the Son has set me free then
I am free, I’m free indeed, and
Nothing can take that from me when
I am free, forever free
There is now no condemnation,
There is now no separation,
If the God of my salvation
Says I’m free, forever free.” 2
I am free to live for Him! My mission is no longer to vindicate God’s character, but to build His Kingdom. The mistakes and missteps and sins that I make along the way will in no way jeopardize my salvation. I am loved, adopted, accepted, forgiven and I am free to act like it.
My prayer for everyone reading this post is that this Easter, you’ll get a new view of the cross, a fresh perspective that deepens your appreciation for what happened on that pivotal day 2000 years ago. Amen.