“But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world” (Gal. 6:14).
There is a remedy, an anecdote for all our illnesses. Indeed there is a Great Physician who masters in healing all our maladies.
1. The antidote to proud scholarship and blasphemous stroke of the mighty pen is the Cross.
2. The antidote to arrogant experiential spirituality is the Cross.
3. The antidote to boastful pragmatism is the Cross.
4. The antidote to ethnocentric nationalism is the Cross.
5. The antidote to Pharisaic-legalism is the Cross.
6. The antidote to cold un-affectionate intellectual prowess is the Cross.
7. The antidote to self-deification and self-glorifying musicianship is the Cross.
8. The antidote to indifference, resentment, unforgiving heart and division in the body of Christ is the Cross.
9. The antidote to liberalism with a very low view of God and the Bible is the Cross.
Therefore,at the center of every human thinking; at the center of all our scholarship and education; at the center of all our heart-felt religious affections and convictions, ability and practicality, the Cross of Jesus Christ must shine forth, mortifying the flesh in its pursuit of stealing God’s glory, and enabling us to say in meekness: “My only boast is in the Cross of Jesus Christ.” This is the essence of what it means to be a Christian. And yet, this would mean we have only scratched the surface, for we “know in part and we prophesy in part.”
The root of Church unity lies in the hearts and minds of people who not only “know” but are broken together by the power of the Cross. All administrations, institutions, memberships, agendas, meetings, synod conferences, pastoral ministries, mission enterprises, evangelistic outreaches, cross-cultural dialogues and inter-relationships between global Churches must come under the light and omnipotent influence of the Cross.
The Cross is where a true Christian fellowship begins [This is where we all meet–it is our spiritual rendezvous, as it were]. The Cross of Jesus Christ is like the blazing heat of the Sun that shines into the darkest corners of our human existence illuminating our hearts and minds to embrace the all-satisfying grace of God. One cannot see the earth without the light of the sun, and therefore it is in the light of the Cross that we see and study the surface of this earth. When we deny the Cross at the center of all our theologizing and philosophizing we end up becoming like spiritual lunatics dumbstruck by the moon. Therefore, true Christianity begins by boasting only in the Cross and it ends with God receiving all the glory. There is no greater and deeper reality than the glory of God. The deeper you go, with the Cross at its center, God and His glory -is all you get. Because all things are in Him, by Him, for Him, through Him. To Him be all the glory forever!
NOTE: From an excerpt of a sermon I preached at Tokyo Christian University Chapel in March 2008.