[CF Devotionals] 2003-09-07 - Philippians

Part 17

  1. The Submissive Mind - Cont'd.

    Verse 8: This verse lists the last two steps, death and even worse, death through crucifixion. Here we see the central point of Christianity, the cross. All of history moved toward the cross, the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. And all history moves outward from there. This is the center of God’s program for the salvation of humanity.

    "Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered" (Hebrews 5:8).

    It was not enough that Christ died. His death in an of itself wasn’t adequate for providing salvation. This is why a number of attempts on His life were fated to fail. The efficacious death was the death of the cross. And the death of the cross was, for a Jew and therefore the God-man, Christ, the most humiliating of all.

    "… You must not leave his body on the tree overnight. Be sure to bury him that same day, because anyone who is hung on a tree is under God’s curse. You must not desecrate the land the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance." … "Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: "Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree." (Deuteronomy 21:23; Gal. 3:13)

    These are all acts of humility, not just because being God, Jesus went though all of this. But He was able to go through all of this, allow Himself to be humbled, because He was acting for the good of others, the good of you and me. As Boice notes:

    "In the first place, Jesus died to remove sin. And He removed it by bearing its penalty Himself.… The second reason for Christ’s death is that He died to satisfy divine justice. The justice of God calls for the punishment of sin, and the punishment of sin is death.There is one more reason for Christ’s death. … Jesus also died to reveal God’s love" (pp. 145-147). 8
    "Then Christ would have had to suffer many times since the creation of the world. But now he has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself." … "He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed" (Hebrews 9:26; 1 Peter 2:24).

    This is the answer to all the world’s claims, and sadly, those of some who call themselves Christians, that God will save everyone. They say that no one will be lost, whether they accept Christ or not. But the arrogance of this is phenomenal. How could anyone believe that God would have put Himself through all of this if there was another way to be saved? God is the One who created this world. God is the One Who defines the way in which one can be saved.

    "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." … " Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me" (Romans 6:23; John 14:6).

    It was Lowry who penned the words which oft remind us of this truth.

    What can wash away my sin? Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
    What can make me who again? Nothing but the blood of Jesus.
    For my pardon this I see, Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
    For my cleansing, this my plea, Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

    Nothing can for sin atone, Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
    Naught of good that I have done, Nothing but the blood of Jesus.
    This is all my hope and peace, Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
    This is all my righteousness, Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

    O precious is the flow That makes me white as snow;
    No other fount I know, Nothing but the blood of Jesus. 9

  1. Boice, p. 145-147.
  2. Lowry, Robert. "Nothing But the Blood," The Celebration Hymnal, Word Music, 1997, #337.

Questions or Comments?

[email geoff] gkragen@aol.com