Approaching Good Friday

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But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

(Romans 5:8, NIV)

One of the most challenging theological spots in my life came up at my ordination interview. When asked about the state of man without Christ, I gave my prepared answer, which proved wishy-washy at best. I was challenged to embrace the reality that all are condemned in sin if they have not placed themselves under the cross of Christ. This is what drives our missionary and outreach efforts … man is lost without Christ! I am lost without Christ!

As part of the Evangelical movement of churches, we value Easter Sunday but focus so much on the resurrection that the necessity of the cross seems glossed over. It is essential we grasp the reality and depth of our sin; we are born depraved … broken, lost, incomplete, destined to eternal separation from God in Hell. To truly value the cross, we must embrace how lost we are without it; we must face the depth of our sin.

While I count it a privilege to having been raised in church, it has held me back from grasping this. My goal over these last years has been to more fully understand myself and what drives me; instead of glossing over what is “normal” in my life, to examine my motivations and goals. Too often they come back to sin, not Christ.

I am so desperately in need of the cross. Christ died on Good Friday. Our Father God allowed His Son to be separated from Him so we might be brought together with Him. Let us embrace this reality. As we approach Easter week, let us make space to reflect, examine, pray.

Pastor Ryan