Max Lucado is one of my favourite writers and I am sure he will not mind if I use some of his words in a blog during Easter. He has a wonderful way with words, but more so he describes events in the Bible in a way that no one else does.
At the beginning of his book,"No Wonder They Call Him The Savior", he describes a conversation he had with Ian. Ian was a man who explained:
"I grew up in the church, I wanted to go into the ministry. I took all the courses, the theology, the languages, the exegesis. But I quit. Something just didn't click".
Earlier in the conversation, he said: "Don't talk to me of religion, I've been down that road. And please, stay off theology. I have a degree in that. Get to the heart of it, okay? I want to know what counts."
I know that many people feel the same way as Ian. Caught up in all kinds of religious rules and practices, habits and beliefs, but with no personal experience of the the Christ in their lives. They all basically ask the same question: "What really counts?”
Max explains it like this:
"....The part that matters is the cross. No more and no less.
It rests on the time line of history like a compelling diamond. Its tragedy summons all sufferers. Its absurdity attracts all cynics. Its hope lures all searchers.
And according to Paul, the cross is what counts.
My, what a piece of wood! History has idolized it and despised it, gold-plated it and burned it, worn and trashed it. History has done everything to it but ignore it.
That's the one option that the cross does not offer.
No one can ignore it! You can't ignore a piece of lumber that suspends the greatest claim in history. A crucified carpenter claiming that he is God on earth? Divine? Eternal? The death-slayer?
No wonder Paul called it "the core of the gospel." Its bottom line is sobering: if the account is true, it is history's hinge. Period. If not, it is history's hoax.
That's why the cross is what matters., That's why if I had that cup of coffee to drink with Ian again I would tell him about it. I'd tell of the drama on that windy April day, the day when the kingdom of death was repossessed and hope took up the payments. I'd tell of Peter's tumble, Pilate's hesitancy, and John's loyalty,. We'd read about the foggy garden of decision and the incandescent room of the resurrection. We'd discuss the final words uttered so deliberately by this self-sacrificing Messiah.
And finally, we'd look at the Messiah himself. A blue-collar Jew whose claim altered a world and whose promise has never been equalled.
No wonder they call him the Savior."
What more can I say, but "Please consider this cross and the Man who were nailed to it. Will it become a hinge or a hoax for you?"
Blessed and happy Easter to all my Blogger friends.