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  • Pastor Jeff Farster

Which is it? The Crucifixion or the Resurrection that delivers from Sin?

I was studying Psalm 88, particularly; verse 10 and I came across a quote by Napoleon Bonaparte, the disposed Emperor of France. When asked the question, “Do you believe that Jesus Christ really rose from the dead?” For a long time, Napoleon stared into the distance, taking in the shores of the island of Helena, where he was banished; looking out at the ocean, he finally answered saying, “You can go to the poorest of the poor and mention the name of Jesus. Instantly recognition and respect will be obvious. You also can go to the Crowned Heads of Europe and mention the name of Jesus. Likewise, respect and reverence instantly will be given. Men lay down their lives for Him. Mighty armies will march by His authority. Sir, no dead man could command that type of respect.”

This led me to ponder my observations, concerning the emphasis on the Resurrection of Jesus Christ which is an absolute, undeniable truth. There were over five hundred people who saw Him alive after His resurrection (1 Cor 15:3-8) not to mention the testimony that abides in the heart of every believer, which is made alive by the indwelling Holy Spirit. But the enemy has moved the “church” from the cure: the crucifixion of Jesus Christ where the sinner is saved and the believer is sanctified, for those who put their trust in Christ, instead to the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Now do not misunderstand me, the Resurrection is a key tenant to our faith, for without Christ being risen, we would have no hope in this life, let alone in the life to come. The Resurrection was the Fathers ratification of the New Covenant, which Jesus instituted by freely giving up His life’s blood on the cross. That being said, it is the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ, not the Resurrection that atoned for our sin. His Finished Work on the cross whereby we are saved and made righteous, once again, is not the Resurrection.

Why is this so very important? Paul under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit would write “In whom we have redemption, through His blood, the forgiveness of sins according to the riches of His grace” (Eph 1:7) Again Paul says “But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ” (Eph 2:13) In writing to the church at Colosse, Paul would remind the believers, “Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of His dear Son: in whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins” (Col 1:17

It is the Crucifixion, where the sin debt was paid. It is the Crucifixion where the power of the sin nature was broken, not the resurrection!

Why is this of the utmost importance? For if the sinner places his or her faith in the Resurrection, they will not be saved. And if the believer places their faith in any other, for their sanctification, they will frustrate the Holy Spirit who alone can and will cleanse us from all unrighteousness in our lives, and almost all things are by the law purged by the blood and without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins. This is why Paul would write to the church at Corinth: But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling block, and unto the Greeks foolishness; 1 Cor 1:23 and 1 Cor 2:2 For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

I think you get my point; it is Christ crucified and faith placed there, whereby the sinner is saved and the Believer is sanctified! But Satan, the master deceiver that he is; is moving people and even pastor’s to place their faith in the Resurrection alone for salvation, leading them to bypass Calvary, which leads to spiritual destruction. I have noticed the past few months a subtle change, such as in the ‘Statement of Faith’ of some churches, available on their church websites, as well as a local mega church pastor in Atlanta, stating in a message, "If you believe in the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ, that's all I need to know. Christianity doesn’t hinge on the truth or even the stories around the birth of Jesus. It hinges on the resurrection of Jesus.”

The Levitical High Priest did not march right into the Holy of Holies, rather he had to stop at the Brazen Altar and atone for his sins by the shedding of blood and then only once a year. Therefore you cannot bypass Calvary of which the Brazen Altar was a type and foreshadow of the Cross.

This all plays into these last days of which we live, whereby the enemy craftily is moving the faith of many from Christ Finished Work on the Cross to the Resurrection, as the corner stone of faith, by which men believe they are saved.

Paul in writing to Timothy, the young pastor, said in 1 Tim 4:1 Now the Spirit speaks expressly that in the later times some will depart from THE faith (1Paul uses the term “THE” faith as referring to the cross, so we are told here that some will depart from the cross as the means of salvation and victory) giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils. (Emphasis mine)

As the clock ticks by in the last hours of the last days, we must keep our faith in Christ Finished Work on the Cross. Do not be deceived brethren and keep looking up. For it is the Blood of Jesus and nothing but His Blood that saves.

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