Resurrection Power 4/13/20

“For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.” (I Corinthians 1:18)

Through the preaching of the cross, the difference between the lost and the saved is clearly seen. To the lost, to “them that perish,” the whole idea of the cross is foolishness. Someone died on a cross. That someone was the Son of God. Somehow his death paid the penalty for our sins. This someone was raised from the dead. And if we believe in him, we will have eternal life. What foolishness! Paul explains, “the god of this world has blinded the minds of unbelievers to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ.” (II Corinthians 4:4)

But to those of us who are saved, the cross is the power of God! It is the power of God that raised Jesus from the dead. It is the power of God that takes a lost sinner and through Christ makes him a new creature, gives life to his spirit, gives him a heart of flesh to replace his heart of stone. It is the power of God through the Holy Spirit that transforms us each day more and more into the image of Christ.

Look at proud Peter. He is humbled by his denial of Jesus, but restored by the risen Christ, and filled with boldness by the Holy Spirit. This simple, uneducated fisherman, preaches a sermon on the day of Pentecost and about 3,000 people repented and were saved.

Consider Paul, the persecutor of the church. He was a well-educated man, a Pharisee. He zealously pursued the followers of Christ, seeking to imprison them, seeking to put an end to this new sect. But Christ confronted him, and Paul became the great missionary and servant of the risen Christ.

And then, there are you and me. God takes the weak and the broken, takes what is foolishness to the world, and transforms us into His children. Cleansed by the blood of Christ and empowered by the Holy Spirit, He calls us His own. But being His own, we are expected to serve Him, to live in His strength and by His power.

Through the cross, Christ has broken the power of sin over us. We are free from that dominion, and we are strong in the might of the Lord. God calls us to live as His ambassadors, as His living letters, to show forth His glory. May we respond as Isaiah did, “Here am I, Lord. Use me!”

Pastor Mike

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