“Blood flows from your forehead, from your hands, and from your scourged body (O Lord). It flows slowly in long streams. It is going to flow from your open side as though your heart were bursting under the pressure of Your suffering love. The cup is poured out in libation.
“The crown of thorns bruised Your head. Woven in the form of a circle, these thorns are like the sins of men, gathered together and heaped upon You.
“Your feet (O Lord) are nailed to the wood. Your Cross is the winepress where the true vine is pressed. You have no possibility of escape. You are waiting for me … Fastened to the Cross, You compel Yourself to this waiting. It is possible for me not to come, but You are there and You remain where You have allowed Yourself to be placed.
“Your arms are stretched out. They are open as an appeal to all men. They cannot be closed again. The nails keep them there in this gesture which is at one and the same time an invitation and an embrace. In silence they beckon to me: ‘Come.’ ‘
God doesn’t force anyone to come. We aren’t dragged into His kingdom by the hairs of our heads.
He loves us into it, and because He loves us into it, it means the Cross. Thorns. Nails. Crucifixion. Costly forgiveness!
A person said once, “I’ve seen an awful lot of anger in my time and I’m not scared of hell, no matter how fiery some people may think it is. But I’ll tell you what I’m scared of. I’m scared of the love of God. Scared of having to look in the eyes of the Crucified Christ on the Last Day and see that I failed Him, that I did not accept His costly forgiving love, that all of what He did on the Cross was in vain as far as I was concerned. This for me would be hell.”
When some of his soldiers were being buried on the battlefield, George Washington turned to one of his officers and said, “There will come a day when people will think that freedom is cheap because they have not died for it.”
Freedom is not cheap. It is paid for with blood. Is the love of God cheap? Is His forgiveness cheap? When we look at the Cross we know that God has gone as far as He can go for us. Can He go any farther? Can He die again? How far will you go to meet that love?