We are considering reasons as to why we today should proclaim Jesus Christ and Him crucified:
1. We preach Christ crucified to show the reality of sin.
2. We preach Christ crucified to show God's love for sinners.
Let's now consider three more reasons:
3. We preach Christ crucified TO SHOW GOD'S HATRED FOR SIN.
The very nature of God demands that He hate sin. Habakkuk 1:13 - "You are of purer eyes than to behold evil, and cannot look on wickedness." I am afraid that many today do not understand God in this way. I'm afraid that God's great love for sinners has been misunderstood as a tolerance for sin. Not so! God's hatred for sin can be easily seen throughout the history of mankind: In the garden of Eden, the global flood, the plagues of Egypt, especially the death of the firstborn, the death of hundreds of thousands of disobedient Israelites in the wilderness, the cases of Uzzah, Nadab & Abihu, Achan, of the man who picked up sticks on the Sabbath, etc.
It is true that God loves man but He also hates sin! We can see the supreme manifestation of God's hatred for sin in the crucifixion of Christ. Why else would God go to such great lengths to atone for sin if He didn't hate it with all His being? If sin wasn't such a big deal, God would have found an easier and less painful way to take care of the problem of sin without having Jesus die on the cross.
Man has a tendency to laugh at sin or to think it is not so bad. God doesn't think this way. Sin is serious; if you ever doubt that, you need to look to Calvary and realize the great price that was paid to redeem man from sin!
4. We preach Christ crucified TO SHOW THE POWER OF THE SCRIPTURES.
Jesus asked in Matthew 26:53,54 - "Or do you think that I cannot now pray to My Father, and He will provide Me with more than twelve legions of angels? How then could the Scriptures be fulfilled, that it must happen thus?" Notice that Jesus mentioned that His crucifixion was a fulfillment of the Scriptures.
Listen carefully again as He speaks in Luke 24:44-47:
"'These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.' And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures. Then He said to them, 'Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day, and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning in Jerusalem."
Again, do you see the power of the Scriptures in their foretelling of Jesus' crucifixion?
There are many people today who are shown what the Bible teaches on certain subjects, yet they still reject the truth. Too many want to hold on to their opinions instead of what God's word teaches. Let us all respect God's word to the extent that we will learn its truths and obey them. After all, the Scriptures were powerful enough to foretell the crucifixion of Jesus--aren't they powerful enough to demand our utmost attention and submission? Man is often wrong, but God's word is not.
If you ever doubt the power of God's word, look to the cross!
5. We preach Christ crucified TO SHOW THE NECESSITY OF OBEDIENCE.
Hebrews 5:8,9 - "Though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him." Also consider Philippians 2:5-8 - "Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross."
Not only was Christ obedient to His Father, but He was obedient even if that obedience would cause Him to forfeit His life--and that is exactly what happened! Christ clearly showed the necessity of obedience by His actions, did He not?
Remember II Thessalonians 1:6-8? - "Since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you, and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ." Those who do not obey the gospel will suffer God's vengeance for their sins--they will be lost forever. We are only kidding ourselves if we think the disobedient will enjoy the blessings of salvation.
Those who obey God are those who will be saved (cf. Matt. 7:21; Heb. 5:8,9). If you ever wonder if obedience to God is necessary, then just look to the cross and you'll know that since it was necessary for Jesus, certainly it is necessary for us as well!
Dear listeners, Paul proclaimed Christ and Him crucified, and we ought to do the same. May our boasting be in the cross of Jesus and may we be crucified (dead) to the world (cf. Gal. 6:14).