Why the cross?
I think we will never stop discovering answers to this question. There are many.
Right now, the answer that most resonates in my spirit is this; There is nothing that can change the heart of man except self-sacrificial Love.
The heart of man is bent on self. Self is what we are born caring about… from the first moments of conscience, we are concerned with number one. As we grow up we find that it is beneficial for us to act as though we care about others. The the best way to get something out of someone else is to make them think you care about them. I suspect that the vast majority of mankind primarily operates in this realm; controlling each other through a facade of love.
So, even that which appears to be love can, in the end, prove to be far less. Because of this, genuine care and concern, true self-sacrificial love, can be mistaken for less than it is. It is only when the self-sacrificing part of that love is proven that their can be no question of its motive.
The only way that a person rises above this “selfish love facade” is to undergo a complete heart transformation. The only way I can truly love is through a transformation of my heart.
Hearts can only be transformed by Love.
Jesus went to the cross for this. He came and loved us like we had never seen before. He revealed to us the character of His Father in Heaven. And we, confused and hurting, immersed in motives of self, put Him on the cross.
And He, God, allowed it.
As we were committing the most heinous crime imaginable, killing God’s Son, He was up on the cross speaking forgiveness. “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” He gave Himself up to prove to us that He cares more about our well-being than He does His own. He would rather suffer the pain than have us suffer it. He was declaring, with finality, His self-sacrificial love for us. 1 John 4:8 tells us that “God is love”. Christ is the first and only to live a life entirely based in selfless love; This was the perfect revelation of the character of God. The culmination of this selfless love took place at the cross. It is by this love that hearts are transformed and it is through this love that a ripple effect of transformation is taking place.
All true, self-sacrificial love has its source entirely in God. The hearts of men can only be changed by God…. only by Love.