Traditional, legal views of the Cross suggest God is concerned more with our guilt than restoring a personal relationship. Is the Cross really about God’s wrath than God’s love? Did Jesus die for God’s sake or our sake? Do we really think God couldn’t forgive us until His Son died, but Jesus forgave others before His death? Traditional, legalistic, bloody views of the Cross don’t adequately convey God’s love reasons for the Cross.
It is difficult enough to get people to talk about spiritual matters. Believers just want others to know Life goes better with God. Sometimes, believers want to talk about spirituality because they have this paranoia that God is going to torture people in Hell. He isn’t but that is another story. If you are wicked, wicked, wicked and hate God with all your heart, you will get what is coming to you for the sake of your victims.
Isn’t one of the first things a believer feels obligated to do is help others pray sooner than later “Jesus, I accept you died for my sins [blood had to be spilled for God’s sake], and I ask for forgiveness.” God could have just verbally forgiven us, but maybe He thought something much more radical was necessary. There is a better way to convey God’s love to others so that they might understand and want to be in a relationship with Him.
Jesus encouraged people to go and sin no more for their sake and don’t forget about Him. Jesus never spoke about having to sooth God’s anger. Maybe the Cross doesn’t represent what we think. Children don’t ultimately benefit from parental love they fear; they benefit from understand how unconditionally loved they are. The Cross is really about:
- Proving how far God will go to have a relationship, not how far God will go to pay for sins
- Satisfying a need in us at God’s expense, not to satisfy some need in God at Jesus’ expense
- Liberating and persuading us to do right, not about judging as if death rids of consequences
- Demonstrating God love for us, not that God is so mad that He had to kill someone
- Changing our attitude about God, not changing God’s attitude about us
- Having a relationship with God, not about escaping Hell
- Conveying the destructiveness of sin, not that God can’t forgive us unless sacrifice happens
- Persuading us to trust in God’s ways, not in the folly of our own wisdom
God always has our best interests in mind and was willing to prove He loves us more than we can ever imagine. If someone wronged me and the only way I could satisfy my anger and forgive was to kill my child, what does that say about me as a parent? Jesus died not to change God’s attitude but our attitude toward God. The Cross was not about exacting punishment; it was about helping prevail over sin’s power in us. The Cross frees us to have a free conscience and know we can have a relationship with our Creator.
When we talk to people we don’t have to worry about them repenting on the spot, understanding the blood of Jesus, and how anger God is. Wicked people don’t want to discuss God. We simply need to know God loves us and wants to be a part of our lives. Believers want people to consider that God is bigger than them and able to provide answers if they are searching. God is like having a parent who truly loves you unconditional with no strings attached. Once you understand this, you will be inspired to follow God for your own good. God is not a representation of our earthly parents but the perfection of the human parents we have always desired.