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The Cross: Where Love and Righteousness Collide

With angels singing and kings bowing, God gave us His perfect Son at Christmas. And on Good Friday, we killed Him. So with Easter, He gave Christ to us again.

More than any other human in history, Jesus Christ had “the power of an indestructible life.” (ESV) As God, He was eternal and immortal. Yet He did truly die.

Nothing could have snatched His life from unwilling hands. Government tried, when Herod sought to kill Him in the cradle. Satan tried in vain to tempt Him to suicide.  Stormy waves didn’t harm Him—He walked on the water and slept through the thunder.  Hunger and thirst only seemed to make Him more formidable. Only one thing could kill Him: judgment— for your sin and mine.

Even this arrangement did not have to kill Jesus; the Father designed it to be so. For three hours on the cross, He removed that “power of an indestructible life” and made Jesus vulnerable to the judgment that the rest of us so richly deserve. And Jesus willingly cooperated in this plan!

But our sin did not have to be a problem for God. He could have just shrugged and said, “Ugh. Enough of that project. Humanity belongs in the cosmic dumpster.” Our sin was only a problem if He wanted to be with us. A holy God can’t commune with sinful mortals—not fully, not forever. He wanted to be our bridegroom, friend, and eternal Father. Something had to be done.

My Muslim friends have said, “God can wave His hand and say, ‘I forgive you.’ He doesn’t have to die or kill anyone over it.” And I say, “Yes, I can imagine a universe like that. The question is, is that the universe we live in?”

It is not. We live in a real universe where God came into it, at a certain time and a certain place, in human form to…

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