The central message of Christianity is not the Sermon on the Mount, nor is it the parables about loving one’s neighbour. The Good Samaritan’s work is the result of the power of the cross in your life. The message that changed the first century world was that human beings are guilty, helplessly guilty of sins for which they can never atone. The cross destroys all human pride to achieve one’s salvation by good works. It is true to say and safe to say that the cross stands as proof of God’s love, but it also reveals the ugliness of our sins. Long time ago I heard or read something like this which makes a lot of sense: “It was not the nails that crucified Jesus on the cross, it was not the nails that let him hang and die, BUT my sin.” Someone has said, “It seems unbelievable to comprehend that the early apostles and Christians boldly proclaimed that this cruel, humiliating method of execution of Jesus was God’s most amazing saving event.” No wonder it was a stumbling block to the religious people of the day and foolishness to all who considered themselves wise and intellectual.
Very few know that the central doctrine of Christianity is that Christ died on the cross to rescue sinners from eternal hell. P. T. Forsyth gives us a warning; “If you move faith from that centre, you have driven the nail into the church’s coffin. The church, then, is doomed to death, and it is only a matter of time she shall expire.”
Pastor Lutzer said: “The church can only live and breathe at the cross; without it, there is no life and no reason to exist. Properly proclaimed, it is “the power of God unto salvation.” (Rom.1:16). In the church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem we saw multitudes of tourists kissing the statue and other icons representing the crucifixion. No doubt most people think of the cross and other icons with deep sentimentality, but without the spirit of repentance it is nothing. Folks, without repentance of sins and faith in Christ, there is no salvation. All your righteousness are very dirty, horrible, smelly rags. There is only one place in the whole wide world where you can find this truth: our utter sinfulness was revealed, the righteousness and holiness of God demonstrated, the wrath of God poured out, the punishment of our sins completed, the love and grace of God abundantly and clearly crystallised. The place? Calvary!! Our only hope in life and death is the righteousness of Christ. Trust Him as your Saviour. All by grace and by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.