John 12:23-24, 32 “Jesus replied, ‘The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it produces many seeds. But I, when I am lifted up from the earth will draw all men to myself.”
Jesus came to the hour of his death, assuring us of the victory that would take place on that cross. The cross, when faced with all its harsh realities, doesn’t feel like victory. But it completely disarmed the Devil and his schemes. While he tried to use his most powerful weapon of death against Jesus, Jesus took it and made it a victory. He overcame temptation. He humbly gave himself in the face of worldly power and pride. He was obedient in a world filled with rebellion. His innocent blood covered the sins of the world. And it was all confirmed in his resurrection from the dead. On the cross Jesus said, “it is finished.” And his resurrection said, “it is good.”
Jesus looked for the cross to do two things. His death would create more life. Let’s look at the seed metaphor.
Corn: Here are some fun facts about corn. A kernel of corn is the seed of the plant. A stalk is grown from one kernel of corn. On each stalk there is usually one ear of corn. On one ear of corn there are an average of 800 kernels set in 16 rows. One seed planted in the ground produces 800 seeds on average. Plant those 800 seeds and you have 800 ears. Those 800 ears hold 640,000 seeds.
Just like a seed that grows into a plant and produces more seed, so Jesus said his death and resurrection would create more daughters and sons of God. He was the firstborn from the dead indicating there will be many more that follow.
His death on the cross became an invitation to life. It is an open invitation for all who come to the cross and trust him as Savior. Jesus draws all. He invites all. And most stop at least for a moment to look. When we look, with faith, we find the life he promised. John says this is eternal life.
On this Good Friday, do you sense Jesus calling you to the cross? The cross is his invitation to life through him. The cross is the provision of salvation. The cross is also the path of living out salvation. He calls us also to carry our own cross. He showed us the way of holiness, obedience, humility, surrender. As we walk in faith, in his footsteps, we will be pointing others to that grand invitation – the Son of God giving himself for us.
Lord, thank you for the beauty of the cross. Thank you for the righteous power that turned Satan’s greatest weapon into the way of life. As we reflect on your cross this Good Friday, fill us with the confidence that it is good. Because love dies and by that brings life.
If you’d like start at the beginning of these Holy Week Devotionals, you may do that here!