Daily Spirit & Word 549:
The Foolishness of The Cross:
The CROSS MEANS Many Things:
It’s often surprising how many times the Cross comes up in our daily life. But first as I spoke yesterday in church on this subject, I asked the children to come to the front, I’d set up an easel with a flip-chart pad, with pre-drawn pages. Once they were all in position I asked if they’d ever played the game of “Arm-Wrestling”?. Most people had at one time in their life. I asked how many people had won and they all put their hands in the air. Then I asked the children, picking on the smallest child, “If I were to arm-wrestle her, who would win?” They said, “You would” I said “Why?” answer, “Because you are bigger”… Then I asked, who’d win against God??? “No one would!” It’s amazing, but kids just KNOW 🙂
The Text from the Bible for Sunday was;
1 Corinthians 1:18-25
18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.
19 For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.”
20 Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world?
21 For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe.
22 Jews demand miraculous signs and Greeks look for wisdom,
23 but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling-block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles,
24 but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.
25 For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength.
Let’s Look at some ways the Cross is used in daily life and what it can mean.
1) Sums: (Mathematics, Arithmetic, Problems)
I shared with the kids that at school, I was brilliant at mathematics. I had some example problems on the board: 3+5=???? I’d left the answers blank. I ask the kids if they knew the answer to keep quiet, they were all bursting to shout it out. Getting them wrong in School meant getting a red cross next to the answer. I said, “My teacher loved me in school when I was five, she used to put big red corsses next to my answers, the cross means a kiss.” The kids said, “No! It’s because you were wrong”. I pretended I didn’t know. They loved it.
I said, later on I discovered that the RED X on my schoolwork was indeed because I was WRONG.
It’s funny that, the X means we’re wrong.
We’ve ALL Sinned. All Broken God’s Commandments (by lying, stealing, being disobedient to our parents).
Romans 3:23 (NIV) “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,”
2) LOVE: Valentines Card:
Next: I said, “Later on in life, I knew that the X mean love, because there was a Valentines Card with my name on it, it said; Roses are red, violets are blue, this world feels much better, because Donald, I’ve fallen in love with you” I explained, there were lots of Crosses: Which really did mean Kisses.
A message of love to the one you love: The Cross on a Valentines means “I LOVE YOU”.
Kiss, Kiss, Kiss,
Do you know that the Cross of Jesus Christ is like God’s Valentines Card to you?
God’s saying, “I love you, I love you, I LOVE YOU”.
- Even though you’ve done wrong: Romans 5:8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
- There is NO greater love than God’s LOVE: John 15:13 13 Greater love has no-one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.
- 1 Peter 3:18 “For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit,”
- How We KNOW He LOVES US: 1 John 3:16 “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers.”
- God LOVES the whole world: John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
“Can you see everyone: The Cross can mean your: Wrong, and it can mean LOVE: but God LOVES you.”
3) Treasure Map:
Here’s another meaning of the Cross: Treasure:
X marks the spot of the Treasure on a Pirate’s Map. (We spent a bit of time talking about Treasure Maps).
Jesus is the TREASURE of the CROSS.
Because of Jesus Death:
- We get to go to Heaven.
- We get the Holy Spirit.
- We get Jesus living in our hearts.
- We are given Holy Spirit Gifts to use in the world.
(BTW: The children came up with these answers on their own).
4) Voting Time. (The X Marks Decision).
At voting time, when we choose the Government, we’ve got a choice to make: Which Party Will We Support?
In the UK: Con, Lab, Lib-Dem, UKIP etc… (BTW Labour won in Church yesterday).
In Greece yesterday it was “Yes” or “No”.
We’ve got to put our X in the Box of our choice.
Cross: of Jesus: Means that You’ve got A DECISION to make.
John 1:12 (NIV) “Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—”
Revelation 3:20 (NIV) “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.”
It’s so strange: The Cross can mean; we’re wrong, God loves us, there is treasure at the Cross of Jesus, but to discover all of that, we’ve got to make a decision for Jesus.
Have you put your X in the Spot for Jesus?
I finished with this QUESTION: “Do you want more of God’s POWER in your life?” and “Remember; God’s foolishness is wiser than man’s strongest wisdom”.
We stood in prayer and asked God for more of His Power, Presence and Wisdom, to enable us to live the life that He’s called us to live.
Have an awesome week with the power of God’s love in your hearts.
P.S. Read first Corinthians chapter 1 in context.
1 Corinthians 1:1-17
1 Paul, called to be an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and our brother Sosthenes,
2 To the church of God in Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be holy, together with all those everywhere who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ—their Lord and ours:
3 Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
4 I always thank God for you because of his grace given you in Christ Jesus.
5 For in him you have been enriched in every way—in all your speaking and in all your knowledge—
6 because our testimony about Christ was confirmed in you.
7 Therefore you do not lack any spiritual gift as you eagerly wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed.
8 He will keep you strong to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.
9 God, who has called you into fellowship with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful.
10 I appeal to you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought.
11 My brothers, some from Chloe’s household have informed me that there are quarrels among you.
12 What I mean is this: One of you says, “I follow Paul”; another, “I follow Apollos”; another, “I follow Cephas”; still another, “I follow Christ.”
13 Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Were you baptised into the name of Paul?
14 I am thankful that I did not baptise any of you except Crispus and Gaius,
15 so no-one can say that you were baptised into my name.
16 (Yes, I also baptised the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I don’t remember if I baptised anyone else.)
17 For Christ did not send me to baptise, but to preach the gospel—not with words of human wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.