FAITH GLORIES IN THE CROSS Galatians 6:14Pastor Don Fortner
Grace Baptist Church of Danville
2734 Old Stanford Road
Danville, Kentucky 40422-9438
True faith brings needy sinners to Christ, puts on Christ, and walks in Christ. Faith brings sinners to the cross and glories only in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto us and we unto the world.
Though faith is not righteousness it is the believerís connection to righteousness. Faith finds in Christ and enjoys in Christ the assurance of perfect, indestructible righteousness before God through the merits of Godís own Son. Faith in Christ assures the believing sinner of eternal life and everlasting righteousness in the ages to come, depending upon the perpetuity of that righteousness which can never change. Blessed be God, we shall never put off that Christ whom we put on when we believed (Rom 12:14; Gal 3:27). The garments of salvation shall never wear thin! The robe of righteousness in which the Lord God has clothed us shall never wax old! The beauty our Saviour has put upon us (his own beauty) is a beauty that fadeth not away!
Faith abides ever at the cross. It never takes us away from the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, to which at first it led us. Many seem to think that believers quickly get beyond the cross and leave it behind. Many vainly imagine that the cross has done all it can for us once we believe the gospel. Many tell us we must abandon the cross and go forward, that to remain always at the cross is to be babes, not men of faith. Nonsense!
What is the cross? It is not the mere wooden pole, or some imitation of it, such as papists use. The sooner we abandon such idolatrous things as that, the better. When the Word of God speaks of the cross in which faith glories, it is talking about that great gospel of Godís free grace in Christ, the crucified Substitute, which the cross embodies. We can no more part with that than we can part with life eternal. In this sense, to turn our back upon the cross would be turning our back upon Christ crucified. It would be giving up our connection with the Lamb of God slain upon the cursed tree! This we cannot, must not, and shall not do!
All that Christ did and suffered, from the manger to his resurrection glory, forms one glorious whole. No part of our Redeemerís work shall ever become needless or obsolete. To forsake any part of his work is to forsake him. I always rejoice in the incarnation of Christ. Yet, I know that the incarnation cannot save. I always delight to follow my Master into Gethsemane. Yet, I know that his agony there was not the finished work. I always glory in the cross. My face is always toward it. My eye is ever on the crucified One. Yet, I am convinced that the sacrifice there was completed once for all. I never cease to look into the empty tomb with delight. Yet, I rejoice to know that it is the risen, ascended, exalted, reigning Christ who gives eternal life to this needy sinner. Leaving nothing behind, I trust the whole Christ and the whole of his work for all my righteousness, justification, forgiveness, acceptance, and everlasting salvation.