The Great Irruption - The Work of Christ on the Cross

Table of contents for the series (Aug/2001):
  1. Introduction (this file) [Sept 28/98]
  2. Sacrifice (OT) [Oct 18/98]
  3. Sacrifice (NT) [Mar 8/1998]
  4. Redemption/Ransom (OT) [Sept 2, 1999]
  5. Redemption/Ransom (NT) [Mar 12, 2000...PDF format only, 103K]
  6. Reconciliation [Sept 2000, 239K]
  7. Christus Victor: Triumph over the Powers [Aug 2001, pdf, 97K]

Intro: For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities-all things have been created by Him and for Him. (Col 1.16) The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. 20 For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God. (Rom 8.19ff)

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross. (Col 1.15ff)

I have testimony weightier than that of John. For the very work that the Father has given me to finish, and which I am doing, testifies that the Father has sent me (John 5.36)

I have brought you glory on earth by completing the work you gave me to do. (John 17.4)

For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost." (Luke 19.10)

The Gospels devote almost 20% of their total material to the last week of Jesus' life, which is 1/20th of 1 percent of His time on Earth!
  • Present Priestly ministry in heaven (Rom 8.34 and Heb 7.23ff)
    • "who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us.

      "And the former priests, on the one hand, existed in greater numbers, because they were prevented by death from continuing,but He, on the other hand, because He abides forever, holds His priesthood permanently.Hence, also, He is able to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.

  • The Return for His loved ones (John 14.2f)
    • "In My Father's house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.
  • Our adoption as adult children into the New Universe (Rom 8.23ff)
    • "And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body. For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one also hope for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.

      "An adopted son was considered like a son born in the family. He could no longer inherit from his natural father. He was no longer liable for old debts (a loophole eventually closed [in Roman Law]). So far as his former family was concerned, he was dead." (NIV Bible Dictionary, s.v. "Adoption")

  • His Return in Triumph (Acts 2.21; Heb 9.28)
    • He must remain in heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets.

      and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.

  • The Final Judgment (Acts 17.31)
    • For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to all men by raising him from the dead.
    Framework issues: 1. The magnitude of the Cross-event must be kept in mind "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning.

    "Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.

    "There came a man who was sent from God; his name was John. He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all men might believe. He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light. The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world.

    "He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God-- children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God.

    "The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

    "John testifies concerning him. He cries out, saying, "This was he of whom I said, `He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.' " From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another. For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father's side, has made him known.

    Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. (Col 1.21)

    Then the end will come, when he hands over the kingdom to God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet The last enemy to be destroyed is death. (1 Cor 15.24ff)

    For if while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.(Rom 5.10)

    "Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, 6 who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross."

    For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.

    My God, my God, why hast Thou forsaken me? (Ps 22)

    But the LORD was pleased To crush Him, putting Him to grief; (Is 53.10)

    The nature of the sacrificial Lamb of God...

    2. The historical dimension vs. the timeless dimension
    "And after John had been taken into custody, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, 15 and saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel." (Mark 1.14-15)

    "For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly." (Rom 5.6)

    "But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, 5 to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons.(Gal 4.4)

    "and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25 God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood. He did this to demonstrate his justice, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished- 26 he did it to demonstrate his justice at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus." (Rom 3.24ff)

    All inhabitants of the earth will worship the beast-all whose names have not been written in the book of life belonging to the Lamb that was slain from the creation of the world. (Rev 13.8)

    And for this reason He is the mediator of a new covenant, in order that since a death has taken place for the redemption of the transgressions that were committed under the first covenant (Heb 9.15)

    But join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God, 9 who has saved us and called us to a holy life-not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, 10 but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. (2 Tim 1.8ff)

    in the hope of eternal life, which God, who cannot lie, promised long ages ago, 3 but at the proper time manifested, even His word, in the proclamation with which I was entrusted according to the commandment of God our Savior; (Titus 1.2)

    3. The prophetic set-up
    He said to them, "How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Did not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?" 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself. (Luke 24.25ff)

    The Son of Man is to go, just as it is written of Him; (Matt 26.24)

    Remember how He spoke to you while He was still in Galilee, 7 saying that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again (Lk 24.7)

    The prophets who prophesied of the grace that would come to you made careful search and inquiry, 11 seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating as He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow. (1 Peter 1.10f)

    The Suffering Servant of Isaiah 53 (and second Moses?) Who has believed our message
    and to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?

    He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground.
    He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.

    He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering.
    Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

    Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows,
    yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted.

    But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities;
    the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.

    We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way;
    and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.

    He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth;
    he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent,
    so he did not open his mouth.

    By oppression and judgment he was taken away. And who can speak of his descendants?
    For he was cut off from the land of the living; for the transgression of my people he was stricken.

    He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death,
    though he had done no violence, nor was any deceit in his mouth.

    Yet it was the LORD's will to crush him and cause him to suffer,
    and though the LORD makes his life a guilt offering,
    he will see his offspring and prolong his days,
    and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand.

    After the suffering of his soul, he will see the light of life and be satisfied;
    by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many,
    and he will bear their iniquities.

    Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,
    and he will divide the spoils with the strong,
    because he poured out his life unto death,
    and was numbered with the transgressors.

    For he bore the sin of many,
    and made intercession for the transgressors.

    One Rabbi in the Talmud saw this as applying to the first Moses (b.Sotah 14a):
      "R. Simlai expounded: Why did Moses our teacher yearn to enter the land of Israel? Did he want to eat of its fruits or satisfy himself from its bounty? But thus spake Moses, 'Many precepts were commanded to Israel which can only be fulfilled in the land of Israel. I wish to enter the land so that they may all be fulfilled by me'. The Holy One, blessed be He, said to him, 'Is it only to receive the reward [for obeying the commandments] that thou seekest? I ascribe it to thee as if thou didst perform them'; as it is said: Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he poured out his soul unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors; yet he bare the sins of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.13 'Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great' - it is possible [to think that his portion will be] with the [great of] later generations and not former generations; therefore there is a text to declare, 'And he shall divide with the strong', i.e., with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob who were strong in Torah and the commandments. 'Because he poured out his soul unto death' - because he surrendered himself to die, as it is said: And if not, blot me, I pray thee etc.14 'And was numbered with the transgressors' - because he was numbered with them who were condemned to die in the wilderness. 'Yet he bare the sins of many' - because he secured atonement for the making of the Golden Calf. 'And made intercession for the transgressors' - because he begged for mercy on behalf of the sinners in Israel that they should turn in penitence; and the word pegi'ah ['intercession'] means nothing else than prayer, as it is said: Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither make intercession to Me.
    The Rejected Shepherd and Pierced God of Zechariah: "And I will pour out on the house of David and on the one inhabiting Jerusalem as spirit of grace and of supplications, and they will look on/to Me, whom they pierced and they will mourn for him as mourning for the only child." (Zech 12.10, very literal Hebrew, MT)

    And I said to them, If it seems right to you, give me my wages; and if not, forbear. And they weighed for my wages thirty pieces of silver. And the Lord said to me, Cast it into the treasury, the good price at which I was paid by them. And I took the thirty pieces of silver, and cast them into the treasury in the house of the Lord. (Zech 11.12f, Soncino CD)

    "The reason for the calamity is the people's rejection of the messianic Shepherd-King. Just as the Servant in the Servant Songs (found basically in Isa 42; 49; 50; 53) is rejected, so here the Good Shepherd (a royal figure) is rejected.... In spite of the ideal ministry of the Good Shepherd, the flock as a whole detested him. Similarly, he grew weary of them (cf. Isa 1:13-14) and terminated his providential care of the sheep...Now comes the final, outright rejection of the Good Shepherd, including even "severance" pay (his death is predicted in 13:7). "Give me my pay" speaks of the termination of the relationship; "keep it" is a more emphatic way of terminating the relationship. The "flock" (v. 11) responds with thirty pieces of silver as the remuneration for the Shepherd's services. This sum was not only the price of a slave among the Israelites in ancient times (Ex 21:32) but also apparently a way of indicating a trifling amount. (EBCOT, in. loc.  Zech 11)

    Some of the rabbi's saw this as prediction of a Suffering Messiah, Messiah Son of Joseph as forerunner of Messiah Son of David:

    "And the land shall mourn, every family apart; the family of the house of David apart, and their wives apart. (Zech 12.12)...What is the cause of the mourning ? - R. Dosa and the Rabbis differ on the point. One explained, The cause is the slaying of Messiah the son of Joseph, and the other explained, The cause is the slaying of the Evil Inclination.

    "It is well according to him who explains that the cause is the slaying of Messiah the son of Joseph, since that well agrees with the Scriptural verse, And they shall look upon me because they have thrust him through, and they shall mourn for him as one mourneth for his only son; (Zech 12.10) ...Our Rabbis taught, The Holy One, blessed be He, will say to the Messiah, the son of David (May he reveal himself speedily in our days!), 'Ask of me anything, and I will give it to thee', as it is said, I will tell of the decree etc. this day have I begotten thee, ask of me and I will give the nations for thy inheritance.14 But when he will see that the Messiah the son of Joseph is slain, he will say to Him, 'Lord of the Universe, I ask of Thee only the gift of life'. 'As to life', He would answer him, 'Your father David has already prophesied this concerning you', as it is said, He asked life of thee, thou gavest it him, [even length of days for ever and ever]. (Talmud, Mas. Sukkah 52.a)

    Indeed, Jewish thought become more explicit on this over the first few centuries of the Christian era: "[At the time of the king Messiah's creation), the Holy One will tell him in detail what will befall him: These souls that have been put away with you-their sins will put you in a yoke of iron and make you like a calf whose eyes grow dim [with suffering]. They will strangle your breath with the yoke, and because of the sins of these souls, your tongue will cleave to the roof of your mouth. Are you willing to endure such trials?

    "The Messiah will ask the Holy One: Master of the universe, will my suffering last many years?

    The Holy One will reply: Upon your life and the life of My head, I have decreed for you a period of seven years. But if your soul is saddened by the prospect of your suffering, I shall at this moment banish these sinful souls.

    "The Messiah will say: Master of universes, I take this suffering upon myself with joy in my soul and gladness in my heart, so that not one person in Israel may perish; that not only those who are alive may be saved in my days, but also those who are buried in the earth; not only those who died in my days, but also those who died ever since the days of Adam up to the time of redemption; and that not only these may be saved in my days, but also those who died as abortions; and that not only abortions, but all those the thought of whose creation came to Your mind but who were not created. Such are the things I desire, and for these I am ready to take upon myself [whatever You decree].

    "The sages said: During the seven-year period preceding the coming of (Messiah] son of David, iron beams will be brought and loaded upon the Messiah [son of Jo- seph's] neck, until his body is bent low. Then he will cry and weep, his voice will rise up to heaven, and he will say to God: Master of the universe, how much can my strength endure? How much can my spirit endure? How much my breath before it ceases? How much can my limbs suffer? Am I not flesh and blood?

    "At that time the Holy One will say to him: Ephraim, My true Messiah, long ago, ever since the six days of creation, you took this ordeal upon yourself At this moment, let your pain be My pain. Ever since the day the wicked Nebuchadnezzar came up and destroyed My house, burned My Temple Hall, and banished My children among the nations of the world--and this I swear by your life and the life of My own head--I have not been able to ascend My throne. And if you do not believe Me, see the night dew that has fallen on My head.

    "At these words, the Messiah will reply: Master of the universe, now I am reconciled. The servant is content to be like his Master. [Pesikta Rabbati, Piskas 35-37; cited in The Book of Legends, pp396]

    (The seven years is reminiscent of Dan 9.25ff: "Know and understand this: From the issuing of the decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until the Anointed One, the ruler, comes, there will be seven `sevens,' and sixty-two`sevens.' It will be rebuilt with streets and a trench, but in times of trouble. After the sixty-two `sevens,' the Anointed One will be cut off and will have nothing."
    The Righteous Sufferer of the Psalms (Ps 22) "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?

    Why are you so far from saving me,
    so far from the words of my groaning?

    O my God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer,
    by night, and am not silent.

    Yet you are enthroned as the Holy One; you are the praise of Israel.

    In you our fathers put their trust; they trusted and you delivered them.
    They cried to you and were saved; in you they trusted and were not disappointed.

    But I am a worm and not a man, scorned by men and despised by the people.
    All who see me mock me; they hurl insults, shaking their heads:
    "He trusts in the LORD; let the LORD rescue him.
    Let him deliver him, since he delights in him."

    Yet you brought me out of the womb; you made me trust in you even at my mother's breast.
    From birth I was cast upon you; from my mother's womb you have been my God.

    Do not be far from me, for trouble is near and there is no one to help.

    Many bulls surround me; strong bulls of Bashan encircle me.
    Roaring lions tearing their prey open their mouths wide against me.

    I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint.
    My heart has turned to wax; it has melted away within me.

    My strength is dried up like a potsherd, and my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth;
    you lay me in the dust of death.

    Dogs have surrounded me; a band of evil men has encircled me,
    they have pierced my hands and my feet.

    I can count all my bones; people stare and gloat over me.
    They divide my garments among them and cast lots for my clothing.

    4. Exemplar and Effective Agent
    "You call me 'Teacher' and 'Lord,' and rightly so, for that is what I am. 14 Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another's feet. 15 I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. 16 I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. (Jn 13.13ff)

    To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps. "He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth." 23 When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly. (1 Pet 2.21)

    Then Jesus said to His disciples, "If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. (Matt 16.24)

    Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, 7 but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death- even death on a cross! (Phil 2.5-8)

    For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance-now that he has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant.

    16 In the case of a will, it is necessary to prove the death of the one who made it, 17 because a will is in force only when somebody has died; it never takes effect while the one who made it is living. (Heb 9.15f)

    He forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross. 15 And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. (Col 2.13f)

    5. The effects: past, present, future
    6. Our approach: the various images of His work: the problem, the solution, the goal, the 'daily' results...and then some inter-relationships between them. For example, Col 1.13ff: For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
    The over-arching purposes of His appearing: Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. 14 But John tried to deter him, saying, "I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?" 15 Jesus replied, "Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness." (Matt 3.13-15)

    Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18 I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. (Matt 5.17)

    And in the same way He took the cup after they had eaten, saying, "This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in My blood. (Luke 22.20)

    For I tell you that Christ has become a servant of the Jews on behalf of God's truth, to confirm the promises made to the patriarchs 9 so that the Gentiles may glorify God for his mercy (Rom 15.8)

    For no matter how many promises God has made, they are "Yes" in Christ. (2 Cor 1.20)

    Put your sword back in its place," Jesus said to him, "for all who draw the sword will die by the sword. 53 Do you think I cannot call on my Father, and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels? 54 But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled that say it must happen in this way?" 55 At that time Jesus said to the crowd, "Am I leading a rebellion, that you have come out with swords and clubs to capture me? Every day I sat in the temple courts teaching, and you did not arrest me. 56 But this has all taken place that the writings of the prophets might be fulfilled." (Matt 26.52ff)

    Now when they had traveled through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews. 2 And according to Paul's custom, he went to them, and for three Sabbaths reasoned with them from the Scriptures, 3 explaining and giving evidence that the Christ had to suffer and rise again from the dead (Acts 17.1f)

    I have come to bring fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! 50 But I have a baptism to undergo, and how distressed I am until it is completed! 51 Do you think I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but division. 52 From now on there will be five in one family divided against each other, three against two and two against three. 53 They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law." (Luke 12.49ff)

    "As for the person who hears my words but does not keep them, I do not judge him. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save it. 48 There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day. 49 For I did not speak of my own accord, but the Father who sent me commanded me what to say and how to say it. (John 12.47ff)

    Then Jesus cried out, "When a man believes in me, he does not believe in me only, but in the one who sent me. 45 When he looks at me, he sees the one who sent me. 46 I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness. (John 12.44) Jesus said, "For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind." 40 Some Pharisees who were with him heard him say this and asked, "What? Are we blind too?" 41 Jesus said, "If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see, your guilt remains. (John 9.39f) But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. (John 16.7)

    I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high." (Luke 24.49)

    When God raised up his servant, he sent him first to you to bless you by turning each of you from your wicked ways." (Acts 3.26)

    And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. (I John 4.14)

    The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. (John 10.10)

    "The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, 19 to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor." (Luke 4.18ff)

    The key images of His Cross-work:
      1. sacrifice (32)
      2. redemption/ransom (20)
      3. substitute (19)
      4. covenant sacrifice/mediator (10)
      5. rescue (8)
      6. union (8)
      7. liberation (7)
      8. reconciliation (7)
      9. transfer/exodus (6)
      10. propitiation (5)
      11. triumph (5)
      12. forgiveness (4)
      13. overcome (4)
      14. solidarity (4)
      15. justification [man] (3)
      16. unification of Jew and Gentile (3)
      17. debt cancellation (2)
      18. heir-maker (2)
      19. justification [God] (2)
      20. perfection (2)
      21. example of enduring suffering/reproach (1)
      22. imputation (1)

    The Cross--our starting point: For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. (1 Cor 2.2)

    Jews demand miraculous signs and Greeks look for wisdom, 23 but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, 24 but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 For the foolishness of God is wiser than man's wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man's strength. (1 Cor 1.22ff)

    May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything; what counts is a new creation. (Gal 6.14-15)

    From: The Christian ThinkTank...[] (Reference Abbreviations)