by Dr. Charles Stanley
Tuesday August 9, 2005
The Cross: Our Bridge to God
We hear people say a God of love will not exclude someone from heaven. But this narrow perspective overlooks the fact that He is also holy and just. Because of the Father’s holiness, He cannot tolerate impurity in His presence. Consequently, our sin—the willful disobedience that corrupts our hearts—separates us from Him. In addition, God’s just nature demands punishment for wrongdoing. The penalty for sin is death (Ezekiel 18:4; Romans 6:23), which makes isolation from the Lord eternal.
We can never be perfect and thereby earn access to the Father. Our efforts to build a bridge by means of right behavior or good works are of no use because we inevitably destroy the structure with sin. In His great love, God made a provision that allows us to enter His presence: He laid the cross over the gap created by our corruption. The penalty for our sin had to be paid, so the Father piled every transgression onto His Son and sent Him to die in our place. Only Jesus, who had no sin-debt of His own, could be the perfect sacrifice God required. But both Father and Son paid a heavy price—for a period of time, the connection between the two was severed. (Matthew 27:45-46)
Jesus died so we could live eternally, and He endured separation from the Father so we could be forever connected with Him. Through His death, the Savior satisfied the requirements of justice and demonstrated God’s love for each of us. When we ask forgiveness for our sins and receive Jesus into our lives, we cross over the bridge into righteous communion with God.
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Come hear Dr. Stanley at The Extraordinary Life Rallies this October in