The Cross Provokes. Devotional for Today, January 18

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The Cross Provokes Devotional

The cross provokes. I’m sure you’ve noticed that. The sign of the cross is not just foolishness for many modern people. For them, the cross is a provocation. As soon as they see it, they have a fit of hysteria. That is why they demand its removal from schools, from the town hall, from hospitals. In some countries, they even demand the removal of the cross from the Church building.

Even some Christians are becoming ashamed of the sign of the cross.

Devotional for Today, January 18

The cross provokes. It challenges us. It requires a response on our part. You and me, we are being asked directly to take a stand. The time of vague excuses is over.

Jews demand signs and Greeks look for wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength. (1 Corinthians 1:22-25)

We read verse 22. With that division into “Jews” and “Greeks” Paul meant the whole of mankind of that time. Not only two groups of people. He describes here two basic types of people, of truth seekers.

The one wants to see miracles, the other wants to understand the matter with their intellect. Jesus should fit into their philosophical system. Both types demand from God: you have to prove yourself to us, then maybe we could believe in you. But God proves himself only when he wants it.

Paul says: Our faith is not based on human wisdom, but on God’s power. This power of God works through the Holy Spirit, who comes from God and who fights against the “spirit of the world”.

God truly goes his own way. He just does it that way. We were not asked at all. With Jesus, the Father in heaven has devised a way to redeem people, that is us. Just like that, out of love. There is no way to explain it. He did it simply because he loves us – you and I, we are his great weakness, his loved ones.

And whoever believes this, whoever believes the message of the death and resurrection of Jesus is on the way to Salvation. And I hope this is the way we all want to go.

Prayer for Today

Thank you, Lord Jesus, for the price you paid on the cross. Because of the cross, we can be free. Thank you for the Resurrection. It is a great grace that brings ultimate victory. Your Resurrection conquers sin and death and opens the gates of Life. It opens the gates to the Kingdom of God.

I worship you because you are my Lord and God. You are my Messiah and Savior. Please give me the grace to live according to your Word here on Earth. That with you we may be free and blessed. Amen.

Also read: Devotional for January 17