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Experiencing anew the power of the Cross

Experiencing anew the power of the Cross

Experiencing anew the power of the Cross

2 April 2017

Only the cross of Christ offers us the power to live in full freedom. Photo: Jacob Meyer.

By Scott Simpson

I remember it as one of the most liberating experiences of my life as a Christian.

I was in my mid-20s and on staff at a Christian activity centre in rural Scotland. Every year we had a staff training weekend at the centre. On this occasion the guest speaker was Graham Stamford, from the north of England. Graham’s key verse for the weekend was Galatians 2:20.

It reads: “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”

I was familiar with this passage of the Bible; in fact, at the activity centre we would teach the campers a song which involved repeating this verse over and over.

But at this staff training weekend, through the words of Graham, God revealed to me in a very clear and powerful way what it actually means to “live by faith in the Son of God”. During his final talk, Graham asserted that, “if we try to live the Christian life, then God expects us to fail”. Those words hit me like a sledgehammer.

The realisation suddenly dawned on me that for years I had been trying – and failing – to live as a Christian. I had been trying to do it all in my own strength, failing to understand that God has already done all the hard work, achieved when he sent his Son to die on the cross.

The 19th-century Christian writer and preacher, Andrew Murray, in commenting on Galatians 2:20, sums it up well. “As the representative of His people, He [Christ] took you and me to the cross with Him, and now gives us His life – the life with which He entered heaven and was exalted to the throne,” Murray wrote. “The power of His death and life is active in me. As I hold fast the truth that I have been crucified with Him, and that it is no longer I, but Christ who lives in me, I receive the strength to overcome sin. The life I have received from Him is a life that has been crucified and freed from the power of sin.”

This is an incredible truth, the full knowledge of which I am still seeking to understand, but in it I find wonderful freedom in Christ. There is phenomenal power in the cross of Christ.

This Easter, as you take time to reflect upon the phenomenal atoning sacrifice of God’s Son, may you also experience anew what it means to live in the power of the risen Christ.

Scott Simpson is Managing Editor of the National Editorial Department.


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