[Willow Creek Association] 1999-04-02 - A Love Story

Good Friday - 1999

Like most men, I don't care much for shopping, but I love bookstores. You can generally tell what a book is about just by reading the first few sentences. For example if a book starts out saying: 2 cups of flour, 1 cup of sugar, etc., that is obviously a cookbook. The Bible starts out, "In the beginning, God created." We assume therefore it must be a book about God and His creation. As I study the Bible more and read more, it becomes clear to me that the Bible is actually a love story. When you see the cross this weekend at Easter services, I want you to think about what the cross represents. It represents a love story, written on a wooden cross in the blood of God's precious Son Jesus, 2,000 years ago. The greatest love story ever.

John 19:28-34 (NIV) "Later, knowing that all was now completed, and so that the Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, "I am thirsty." A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus' lips. When he had received the drink, Jesus said, "It is finished." With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
1 Corinthians 1:18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

Colossians 1:20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

Hebrews 12:2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Lord, thank You for loving us so much, that You willingly took our punishment, took our place on the cross and died for us, so that we may live. Thank You for writing the greatest love story ever, on that old rugged cross. We love You and praise You. Amen.