Wisdom from a country preacher series
– Matt. 16:21-28
I feel privileged to be able to share one of Dad’s Lenten sermons this Easter. Part 1 today, watch for part 2 tomorrow.
Think about the cross this Good Friday.
Just as soon as Peter and the disciples acknowledged who Jesus was he started telling them about his and their cross. The cross was a certainty.
In verse 22, Peter said, “Never, Lord!” There was a great preacher who said, “I can bear much but there are four things I hate like poison: 1) tobacco smoke 2) lice 3) garlic 4) the cross. Like Peter.
So many believe Christians should have things better, easier.
This scene probably occurred about six months before his crucifixion. Why did Jesus set his face to go to the cross? For the joy set before him he endured the cross, despised the shame, sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. (Heb. 12:2)
He could have compromised a little. Kept quiet, not been so outspoken, not stirred up the Jews. He could have gone to Syria. Did he believe in a divine rescue like Abraham and Isaac?
See verse 21, he knew his fate. Legend has it he picked up a beam in the carpenter shop one day and a shadow was cast of him on a cross. He seemed to know his fate. Right after the transfiguration, the Father began talking to him about his death. He told his disciples, “I, if I be lifted up will draw all men unto me.”
He wouldn’t let his friends talk him out of doing what he knew to be the will of God (vs. 22-23). he had to be about the Father’s business. He had a mission in life and so do we.
He never made personal comfort his ambition.
He never made security his ambition.
He never left relationships deter him.
A cross is certain when we follow Christ. Sometimes we fail to take up our cross. We fall in step with the world, alter our course to avoid being different. We may fail to change habits that ruin our witness.
You may say, “I don’t have a cross to carry.” Well, maybe everyone around you has a cross to carry because you always have to have your way.
The unbelieving world tries to squeeze us into its mold.
The cross is an eternal symbol of an unadjusted personality in an evil world.
Part 2 continued Saturday. Please share thoughts above, just under the title.