“...come down from the cross and save yourself.” Mark 15:30 NIV
If you have been a Christ-follower for any length of time; you have that life is not a playground but a battlefield. We live in a culture that is self-centered and seeks comfort, not a conflict. If you are serious about living a Christ-centered life; the following truth must be applied every day.
When Jesus was hanging on the cross; the crowd taunted Him to come down from His cross. There is no question that He could have done exactly that [Matthew 26:53] but in so doing He would be disobeying God’s will. The “flesh” is God’s code word for our deed to serve our personal desires. The flesh is man’s lower nature that is centered in fulfilling selfish desires. One of the reasons that many Christians do not have depth in their relationship with Christ is they have not understood and lived the crucified life.
The Apostle Paul wrote that we are crucified with Christ. Galatians 2:20 and that we have crucified the flesh.
- Any time you try to justify yourself; you have come down from your cross.
- Any time you give into self-pity; you have come down from your cross.
- The reason churches split; someone has come down from their cross.
- Divorce occurs because someone [or both] have come down from their cross.
- The reason people criticize and leave their church; because someone has come down from their cross.
We face the same temptation as Christ; to come down from OUR cross and save our SELF. Satan knows that he can not defeat you as long as you remain on your cross because the cross was his ultimate defeat. To live a victorious life you must daily choose to remain on your cross. You will always be defeated spiritually when you come down from your cross. The only way to please God and walk in the Spirit is to keep SELF on the cross.
Since the days of “God Is Dead”; man has been doing his best to remove God from every aspect of our culture. Humanity no longer needs God but may with the help of artificial intelligence develop a new form of collective consciousness that fulfills the role of religion, U.S. author Dan Brown said on Thursday…Brown made the provocative remark at the Frankfurt Book Fair where he was promoting his new novel, Origin, … inspired by the question “Will God survive science?”
“… Are we naive today to believe that the gods of the present will survive and be here in a hundred years?” Brown, 53, told a packed news conference. (Reuters)
Brown informs us that technological change and the development of artificial intelligence would transform the concept of the divine. In promoting his new novel, Origin he asks “Will God be able to survive science?” “We will start to find our spiritual experiences through our interconnections with each other,” he said, forecasting the emergence of “some form of global consciousness that we perceive and that becomes our divine”….“Our need for that exterior god, that sits up there and judges us … will diminish and eventually disappear.”
The Bible is very clear that God is eternal Isaiah 57:15 , He has no beginning and He will never cease to exist Revelation 1:8 It does not matter what Mr. Brown believes; God is who He says He is and Science will not change that.
“People walking by insulted him, shaking their heads and saying, “Ha! So you were going to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, were you? Save yourself and come down from that cross! In the same way, the chief priests were making fun of him among themselves, together with the legal experts. “He saved others,” they said, “but he can’t save himself.” Mark 15:29-31
Throughout Christ’s life, He was constantly tempted to reject the Cross. Satan knew that the Cross would be his ultimate defeat. Jesus could have come down from the Cross saving Himself but I doing so He would have destroyed God’s purpose to save lost mankind. Christ refused to save SELF.
The vast majority of our problems is when refuse to die to ourselves in an effort to save ourselves. The Bible tells us that:
- “Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.” [Galatians 5:24]
- “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. [Galatians 2:20]
Satan cannot touch you as long as you remain on the cross because that is where he is defeated. But when you come down from your ‘cross’ to save yourself, you are exposed to his attacks. When you demand your rights, you have come down from your cross. Many divorces are the result of one (or both) spouses coming down from their cross. Road rage is a sign of coming down from the cross. Wars happen when countries come down from their cross. Lying is often coming down from the cross to protect self. Blaming other is a coming down from your cross.
Jesus died on the Cross not only for the forgiveness of sin but also that we might live victorious.
Though God did not originally design it this way, we live in a performance-based world. Most people (including those in the church) assume that God loves us based on how we act – that’s how everybody else loves us. God’s love for us has nothing to do with what we do.
In Luke 18, we read about a Pharisee that went about to the Temple to pray. He reminds God of all the “good” things he has done. God is not impressed! What he did was not wrong but it he did them with the wrong motive. Jesus talked about folks who did all kinds of good things but said they were “evildoers!” (Matt. 7:23) Motive is huge with God.
We cannot do enough good works to merit God’s love. God is the one who initiates love for us.His love is not a response; it’s the way He is. God is love. So you don’t have to perform to achieve His love. He loves you unconditionally; guaranteed.