“It was not nails that held Jesus to that wretched cross; it was his unqualified resolution, out of love for his Father, to do his Father’s will—and it was his love for sinners like me.”― D.A. Carson
A friend described his uncle’s conversion to Christ. He said his uncle knelt in his family room, repented of his sins, and put his trust in Jesus. The friend commented that “I just can’t believe it’s that easy. It can’t be that simple.” He like so many people was having difficulty with the simplicity of the cross.
The believer knows the truth. Sin made our relationship with God complicated. However, God, through His infinite wisdom and love revealed Himself through the simplicity of Christ on the cross.
Christ giving His life on the cross for us changed everything. It was a pivotal point in human history. It’s where God’s immense love for humanity was put on display for all to see as He made a way for us to be reconciled to Him. The gift Jesus gave by sacrificing Himself for our sins is unthinkable. It is difficult to grasp how God left the glory of heaven to become a man, and endure hate, ridicule, suffering, and death so that we could join Him in heaven for eternity.
2 Corinthians 11:3 (KJV) says, “But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtlety, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” Paul is saying that at the heart and center of your life is the “simplicity that is in Christ.”
Living life God’s way is so simple that most of us cannot understand it. Living life God’s way is clear but we go off trying to make it more complicated than it really is. We have thousands of laws, hundreds of customs, and scores of etiquette rules for every facet of life. And they can be complicated. But none of that has anything to do with living God’s way. Living God’s way is simple.
This is not to say that the Christian life can’t sometimes get complicated and messy. It most assuredly can and will be at times. While Jesus has been very clear and simple in what He expects and demands of us, He never once promised that our obedience in those things would always lead to easy or comfortable places – as a matter of fact, He says more often than not things will get pretty difficult (John 16:33). But the gospel remains simple: Love God and love others. Then do it again tomorrow.
Do not look for thrills. Stay with simple love, complete faith, genuine service, quiet patience. Salvation is as simple as believing in Jesus Christ.
What is the hardest part of the cross for you to understand? Why?
What can we do this week to better understand and appreciate the simplicity and significance of the cross?