The same Cross that saved you is the same Cross that Sanctifies you.
At Salvation, we were called to Believe three things:
- That Adam’s sin in the Garden brought man to a totally depraved state, separated from God, unable to save himself. (Genesis 3:6)
- That God so loved the World that He sent His Only Begotten Son to die for our sins. (John 19:28-30)
- That Jesus Christ rose from the dead three days later, now seated at the Right Hand of the Father. (John 20:7-18)
After a round of Romans 10:9—we were Saved!
That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
– Romans 10:9
Since then, the Church has been teaching everything but the Cross of Christ. With exception to that initial zeal for God at Salvation, life more or less now resembles life prior to Salvation.
‘How does that work?’
‘Is this the Grace of God of Scripture?’
‘Am I even receiving the True Gospel?’
If you’re asking yourselves any one of these intimately related questions—here’s the answer:
Scripture tells us point blank what the characteristics of the True Gospel are. No more relying on charisma, sights and sounds, church activities, etc. As it turns out, the Lord resolved this with one Scripture.
For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.
– I Corinthians 1:17
“For Christ sent me not to baptize” – The focus should never be how many water baptisms we can squeeze into a Sunday—nor any ceremony or distraction that has become the hocus pocus of congregations today.
“but to preach the Gospel” – The Great Commission is still in effect. That means we’re still called to preach the True Gospel
“not with wisdom of words” – Charisma, encouragement, motivational oratory minus Scripture does not add up to the Gospel—much less the True Gospel.
“lest the cross of Christ be made of none effect” – The Cross of Christ still belongs to the Gospel. Without it…this is called False Doctrine. With it, we have the True Gospel—for Salvation and Sanctification.
Let’s talk about Sanctification.
After we got Saved, the Apostle Paul had 14 Epistles ready for Believers to study the Finished Work of Jesus Christ. It is here that Christians are called to broaden their understanding of what Jesus Christ meant when He said “It is Finished”.
When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up his spirit.
– John 19:30
He Meant that:
- He atoned for all sin—past, present and future.
- Took the sin penalty on our behalf.
- Overcame the impact of all sin.
- Fulfilled the Mosaic Law.
- Silenced the Sin Nature of man.
- Defeated Satan.
- Overcame the Flesh.
- Overcame the World.
- Triumphed over the Law of Sin and Death.
- Conquered death.
- Delivered us from condemnation and guilt.
This is known as The Finished Work of Jesus Christ. It is the meaning of the Cross and, thus, the meaning of the New Covenant.
To be Saved, we needed only Believe that He “died for our sins”. Praise God for that, for Salvation is the greatest Gift of them all!
To go on with the process of Sanctification, the Believer must understand the Cross of Christ to be better able to place their Faith in, both, Jesus Christ and His Atoning Work. This is where the Holy Spirit may then truly operate in their heart and life, both, to conform the Believer to the image of Christ and continually dispense the Grace of God on an ongoing basis.
For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
– Romans 8:29
There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.
For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:
That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.
– Romans 8:1-5