Thursday, August 29, 2013

Robert Reyman on the Work of the Cross

Robert Reyman on the Work of the Cross: Killing Christ

killing christ
The cross work of Christ is central to the Christian faith and its proclamation, because of who it was who died on the cross and what it was he did there. With the apostles the church affirms that it was the eternal Son of God, the Word who became flesh, the Lord of glory, who died on Calvary (Rom. 9:5; Titus 2:13; Heb. 1:8; 2 Pet. 1:1; John 1:1, 14; 20:28; 1 Cor. 2:8). Accordingly, in its best moments, the church has “gloried in nothing but the cross” (Gal. 6:14) and has “resolved to know nothing among [the nations] except Jesus Christ and him crucified” (1 Cor. 2:2). It has done so even though it knows that the preaching of the cross is “a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles” (1 Cor. 1:23). It has done so, not only because it knows that “God was pleased through the foolishness of preaching [the message of the cross] to save those who believe” (1 Cor. 1:18, 21), but also because it recognizes that the cross of Christ is “the power of God and the wisdom of God” (1 Cor. 1:24). For Paul to characterize the cross of Christ the way he did in 1 Corinthians 1:24—”the power of God and the wisdom of God”—implies that God accomplished a truly great salvation through the cross work of the Lord of Glory. One can sketch the momentous outlines of that “so great salvation” simply by surveying what the New Testament epistles affirm about the “body,” “blood,” “cross,” and “death” of Christ, words which taken in their contexts represent that great work in terms of a sacrifice (Robert R. Reymond).

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