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How to Rejoice in the Cross

May 18, 2019

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son… John 3:16 (NIV)

What did it mean for the Father to give up his dearly loved Son to a cross? What did it mean for the Holy Son of God to give himself up to become our sin-bearer and be shut out from the love of the Father?

Christians sometimes say something like this: “I know Jesus died for my sins, but I don’t feel that God loves me.”

If that’s you, consider this: Before he created the universe, God the Father had you in mind and planned for you in love. Before you were even born, God the Son took your flesh and lived a perfect life for you.

Jesus went to the cross for you, and your sins were laid on him as he entered into your hell. He was shut out from the Father’s love for you, and in the darkness he cried out, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” He was there on the cross for you… and you’re not sure if he really loves you?

It is possible for you to see his love and learn to enjoy it. You ask, “How can I enjoy this?” Jesus is not on the cross now. He is risen and exalted to the right hand of the Father. His suffering is over; his triumph is complete.

God’s righteous judgment for sin fell on Jesus—he absorbed it, drained it, exhausted it, and came through it. Here’s where you rejoice! Christ wasn’t overcome by hell, he triumphed over it, and he did this for you.

Are you still not sure if God loves you? If so, why not?

The Author
Colin Smith

Colin Smith is the senior pastor of The Orchard Evangelical Free Church in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. He has authored a number of books, including Heaven, How I Got Here and Heaven, So Near - So Far. Colin is the president and teacher for Unlocking the Bible. Follow him on Twitter.

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