Martyn Lloyd-Jones is one of my heroes. He has probably marked me more than any other gospel minister living or dead. I remember as a young undergraduate in college devouring his Preaching and Preachers over a week while visiting my grandparents in Melvin, IA (aside from golf, there's really not much else to do in Melvin but read or watch the corn grow).
As I mentioned in a recent post, I've been enjoying Crossway's compilation of Lloyd-Jones highlights, Walking With God Day by Day. It's a solid devotional book. Today's entry featured a section from Lloyd-Jones' work titled The Cross. Taking his cue from Hebrews 12:24, the good doctor writes:
Has the cross of Christ ever spoken to you? Have you heard its message? The cross of Christ preaches. The cross of Christ speaks. The blood of the cross speaks. It has something to say. Have you heard it? The writer to the Hebrews thanks God that this blood speaks something better than the blood of Abel spoke. You remember the story of Cain and Abel, the first two sons of Adam and Eve, and the story of how Cain slew his brother Abel and shed his blood. He murdered him. And the blood of Abel, spilled there upon the ground, spoke as it cried out for vengeance, punishment, and retribution. The blood of Abel spoke. And God tells us through the writer to the Hebrews that is not the blood you and I have come to. We have come to a blood of sprinkling that "speaketh better things than that of Abel." This is why all these men in the New Testament rejoice in it. This is why the saints of the ages rejoiced in it. The blood speaks, and it speaks the best things that the world has ever heard.
"The cross of Christ preaches." Lloyed-Jones is helping us hear the sermon of the cross--to listen to the message of Christ's blood. And what is that message? In a word, salvation. Whereas Abel's blood screamed judgment, the blood of Christ heralds forgiveness. This is the "better things"--indeed, the "best things that the world has ever heard."