The Evangelical Universalist Forum

What It Means To Be Cruciform

What does it mean for us as Christians to be cruciform?

We are indeed to submit to God and deny ourselves (which may certainly cause us some suffering), but we are also to deny Satan: we are to resist the devil (James 4:7).

The devil, the god of this age (2 Cor. 4:4), is the key power behind evil. Even though he was defeated at the cross, and his weapon of dogma was nailed to it (Col. 2:14-15), he continues to try to keep our focus on ourselves and our own performance (legalism), instead of on JESUS, and receiving and sharing the many free benefits if HIS performance, his victory, his finished work (grace).

So regarding suffering, we are to resist allowing ourselves (or those around us) to be victimized by the devil—whenever we passively accept sickness, poverty, condemnation, et al, as “God’s will.” Because, as we see regarding the “divine exchange” described in Isaiah 53 (especially vs. 4-6, 11), Jesus has already TAKEN our sin, and its consequence of suffering, and GIVEN us his own righteousness and “shalom” (variously translated as, e.g., “health,” “prosperity,” “contentment,” “safety,” “friendship,” and “peace”).

God’s will is for us to prosper and be in health, even as our souls prosper (3 John 1:2). By faith, He wants us to dwell safe and secure under his wings (Ps. 91).

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