At one time we too acted like fools. We didn’t obey God. We were tricked. We were controlled by all kinds of longings and pleasures. We were full of evil. We wanted what belongs to others. People hated us, and we hated one another. But the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared. He saved us. It wasn’t because of the good things we had done. It was because of his mercy. He saved us by washing away our sins. We were born again. The Holy Spirit gave us new life. Titus 3:3-5 NLT
Jesus Christ evokes many images in the minds of people. Some picture Him as a baby in a manger—the Christ of Christmas. Others picture Him as a child, perhaps living in the home of a carpenter or confounding the religious leaders of Jerusalem. Many picture Him as a compassionate and powerful healer who restored the sick and raised the dead. Still others picture a fiery preacher speaking the Word of God to great crowds. And there are those who see Him as the consummate man—a model of goodness, kindness, sympathy, concern, care, tenderness, forgiveness, wisdom and understanding.
Yet the one image of Christ that surpasses all the rest is Jesus Christ on the cross. To know Christ crucified is to know Him as the author and finisher of your faith—the truest picture of His person and work.
Christ’s suffering on the cross is the focal point of the Christian faith. That’s where His deity, humanity, work and suffering are most clearly seen.
© John Macarthur, Truth for Today, J. Countryman and Thomas Nelson Inc., 2001.
Read Matthew 27:37-46
In this passage as we approach Easter we see Jesus asking His Father “why?” at this the worst part of my journey have you turned your back on me. The answer Jesus became sin, by acceptance of the worlds sin, our sin and God could not look upon so much sin.
This brings up the question how should we react when we feel abandoned by God?
I. We should not give up. When things look hopeless God is still WITH Us and we need to keep our trust firmly placed in Him for a brighter future.
II. We need to realise suffering does not mean God has abandoned us. God is still FOR Us Consistent faith is the way to defeat Satan. God supports and helps us when we endure hardship, persecution and testing.
III. God is still GOOD In spite of evil He is still working out His purpose in our lives. We need never despair because our God is a loving God. We never know what GOOD He will bring out of a hopeless situation.
Mark 15:34 Then at three o’clock Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” which means “My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?”
Psalms 31:24 Be brave. Be strong. Don’t give up. Expect God to get here soon.
Philippians 2:3-4 Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet- talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand.
1 Peter 5:6 So be content with who you are, and don’t put on airs. God’s strong hand is on you; he’ll promote you at the right time.
Are you pessimistic or optimistic about the future? There is a lot happening in the world today that is cause for gloom and pessimism. Analyse things and you will realise godlessness, increase in immoral conduct, over throw of Godly-principles, obsession, lawlessness and selfishness are foundational flaws in our corrupt society, which is sick and failing.
On the other hand, the true children of God have optimism because of an endless future in Paradise, where there will be no sin, no sorrow, no suffering, no stigma.
Our trust through learning and adapting the principles of recovery as a way of living assures us ‘God is on the throne’. He is in command of everything and because of that we have a future certainty of our destination for eternity. The final solution is in His hands.
2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you—unless, of course, you fail the test?