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Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"The Cross That Kills"

April 14, 2006

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But we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles.
1 Corinthians 1:23

As presented on *The Lutheran Hour® by

Dr. Oswald Hoffmann,
March 5, 1972.

A lot of people don’t like to hear all this talk about the cross of Christ. They think they have heard all about that, and they have had enough. Actually, they may never have heard it at all.

You see all forms of the cross in the symbols of our culture. All too often, it’s a pretty kind of thing, with the power drained out of it. People sing “The Old Rugged Cross,” but many think only of the good old days and wish they would return. For others, it is just a work of art or something to wear around your neck on a silver chain. When that happens, the message of the cross becomes muted.

I am talking about the cross of Christ as Saint Paul talked about it. It is a real thing. It has not been made unreal by the resurrection of Jesus Christ. I don’t believe in leaving out the resurrection of Christ when you talk about His cross. But you don’t add to the glory of Easter by robbing Good Friday of its meaning. The open tomb gets its meaning from the brutal cross on which Jesus Christ died.

In the cross of Jesus Christ you are not dealing with just another event in history. It is more than simply a moving tragedy. It is a decisive act in the plan of God. God wants to forgive, and He Himself provides a way to forgive. The cross of Jesus Christ is not just the intention of God. It is God’s completed action.

Lord God, help us to see and to celebrate Christ and His cross, the one Man and the one event for us all. Give us life by faith in Him. Amen.

Taken from A Message of Hope: Proclaiming the Cross (selections from messages broadcast on *The Lutheran Hour, celebrating 75 years of proclaiming the promise).

Copyright © 2006 by Lutheran Hour Ministries

*The Lutheran Hour is the longest-running Christian radio broadcast in the world. It is a production of Lutheran Hour Ministries. For more information, visit

Today's Bible Readings: Judges 1-3    Luke 12:32-59

Change Their World. Change Yours. This changes everything.

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