The Blood, The Death And The Cross Of Christ

The Blood, The Death And The Cross Of Christ

By Jacob Redekop

The pivotal points around which all Scripture revolves are the sufferings of Christ and the glories that will follow. There is nothing else that so lifts the heart above the trials and circumstances that we face on our pathway of faith. May the following thoughts about His blood, His death and His cross warm our hearts and cause them to burn for Him.

The Blood Of Christ
“You were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver and gold … but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.” —1 Peter 1:18-19 NKJV

The apostle Peter emphasized the great cost of our redemption. He compared the blood of Christ with things that the world esteems most valuable, such as silver and gold, and called them “corruptible.” Psalm 49 confirms that “those who trust in their wealth and boast in the multitude of their riches, none of them can by any means redeem his brother” (vv.6-7). The redemption of our souls is far too costly. Only God could provide the ransom, and He has done so by giving His only Son, His well beloved One.

These comparisons help us understand and appreciate the infinite value of what Christ has accomplished by shedding His blood on the cross. In Hebrews we read, “Without shedding of blood there is no remission” (9:22). There is nothing else that could pay the debt we owed except the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. Adapting what Ellis Crum wrote in his chorus, “We owed a debt we could not pay; He paid the debt He did not owe.”

We may wonder what moved the Lord forward, going steadfastly to Jerusalem while knowing all that was before Him there? Jesus gave the answer: “Behold, I have come to do Your will, O God” (10:9). It was His delight to do the Father’s will and to finish the work. By that “one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified” (v.14). He endured the cross because of His love to the Father and to all who put their trust in Him. “Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma” (Eph. 5:2).

God has exalted this lowly Man of Nazareth and made Him both Lord and Christ. Now He is seated at the right hand of the Majesty on high, and all who have been redeemed by His precious blood are accepted in the Beloved One according to God’s eternal purpose (see Eph. 1:3-6).

The Death Of Christ
“He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross”. —Philippians 2:8

We are living in a scene where death reigns as the king of terrors. The newspapers regularly list the obituaries, and no matter where you travel you will always find cemeteries. None can escape. Disobedience has brought on us the sentence of death and judgment, and that sentence remains because unbelief wilfully refuses God’s remedy. “It is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment” (Heb. 9: 27).

What is the remedy? It is the grace of God that has brought salvation and has appeared to all men (see Ti. 2:11). The law given by Moses required that something be brought to God in order to be accepted, but we are helpless, without strength, and have nothing good to bring to a holy God. God’s remedy is found in His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, who “humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death.”

These words require our careful attention. “By one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous” (Rom. 5:19). Death came upon all of us by the disobedience of one man – Adam. But the Lord from heaven, the sinless Man, stooped down in obedience to do God’s will, even though it required His going into death – the death of the cross. There, He bore in His own body the penalty of sin, which we deserved. Christ’s obedience brought Him down to where sin and disobedience had taken us.

This is grace! It is the sovereign grace that came by Jesus Christ – the One who ever dwelled in the bosom of the Father. He came to earth to die, that through His death we might enter into the joys of heaven. “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich” (2 Cor. 8:9).

The Cross Of Christ
“But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I unto the world.” —Galatians 6:14

In the beginning of Galatians, the apostle Paul established that the gospel he preached was not after man, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for our sins that He might deliver us from this present evil age. It is by this gospel that we have been called and separated, setting us apart from the principles and practices of this world.

Death by crucifixion is an excruciatingly painful and cruel method of capital punishment. It was used by the Romans, not for a citizen but only for those considered outcasts or unwanted criminals. The rulers of this world crucified the Lord of Glory, nailing Him to the cross. Pilate inscribed on the cross, “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews,” while Herod and his men of war treated Him with utmost contempt and cruelty. It is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree” (Gal. 3:13). To this treatment our Lord Jesus willingly submitted – the One who is the Creator and Redeemer.

Isaac Watts (1674-1748) captured the sentiments of Calvary when he wrote these words:

When I survey the wondrous cross

On which the Prince of glory died,

My richest gain I count but loss,

And pour contempt on all my pride.
Forbid it, Lord, that I should boast,

Save in the cross of Christ my God:

All the vain things that charm me most,

I sacrifice them to His blood.

Nothing can be compared to the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. It has revealed the depths of His love and exposed the true character of this world in its hatred of Christ and His followers. Paul identified with Him as crucified with Christ. The world found nothing attractive in Christ, nor in Paul, and Paul found no attraction in this world. What about us?