Monday, April 11, 2016
“But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world” (Galatians 6:14 KJV).
The chorus of George Bennard’s classic 1913 hymn, “The Old Rugged Cross,” highlights today’s Scripture.
“So I’ll cherish the old rugged cross,
Till my trophies at last I lay down;
I will cling to the old rugged cross,
And exchange it some day for a crown.”
Fellow saints, considering where we were—dead in our trespasses and sins (Ephesians 2:1)—and where we are now—dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord (Romans 6:11), we have every reason to cherish (value) the “old rugged cross.” Once dead in sin, we are now dead to sin; sin is not who we are anymore. We are a “new creature in Christ” (2 Corinthians 5:17). Our translation from Satan’s domain into God’s kingdom was accomplished by Jesus Christ’s finished work on Calvary (cf. today’s Scripture).
Our new identity in Christ now qualifies us to participate in the greatest plan in the universe. We already started when we trusted Christ as our personal Saviour and it will span the endless ages of the future. But, until our Dispensation of Grace closes, the Body of Christ must remain on Earth. When it is time for God to return to Israel’s program, we (corporately) will be relocated to the Heavenly Places. We see a glimpse of this in the closing verses of Philippians chapter 3: “ For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:  Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.”
All of our “glory” (boasting, value) is in Christ and what He did, not in our measly “good works.” There is still so much more He must do in and through us on Earth before we get to Philippians 3:21, but Him working in and through us in the Heavenly Places (cf. Colossians 1:16-20) will also be made possible through the “old rugged cross!” 🙂