We’re in a 5 week series right now titled “Calvary” where every week we’re taking a fresh look at the cross of Jesus. I don’t know about you, but I’ve been encouraged, challenged, provoked and many other things that would take too long to write about here.
I think we’ve all, whether you believe in Jesus or not, at one point felt a ‘draw’ to Jesus and His message and His cross. In John 12 some Greeks tracked down Jesus and wanted to see Him; they were experiencing that same ‘draw’ I just referenced. They wanted to understand who He was, what He was like and what made Him tick. Jesus response to all this in verse 32 was this “And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” Jesus knows He’s irresistible… “I will draw all people to myself.” If you scan through the Gospel of John to other places Jesus uses the phrase “lifted up” you find that He’s speaking about the cross (John 3:14).
Yes He’s been resurrected, what an incredible truth we point people - the dead man lives! In fact our entire faith rests on that truth, if Jesus didn’t rise from the dead our faith is in vain. Yes His birth is miraculous (the creator become part of creation?!), yes we point people to His return.
Above all this, however Jesus explicitly says it’s His death on the cross where He will draw all people. Why? Jesus says in John 12:23 “Now is the time for the Son of Man [Jesus describing Himself] to be glorified” That word ‘glorified’ carries the meaning ‘to be revealed, manifested, and to be honored.’
Still in context of the cross - Jesus is essentially saying this “On the cross you will see the most accurate display of who God actually is, as I lay my life down for you in self giving love.” Wow… The cross is God’s statement of absolute love for all people, of all time. But, also proves how serious sin is. I’m so sinful, it would cost me my life, but so loved, that Jesus took my place.
I love this quote by Timothy Keller “The gospel is this: We are more sinful and flawed in ourselves than we ever dared believe, yet at the very same time we are more loved and accepted in Jesus Christ than we ever dared hope.”
What good news!