April 22, 2022 — The One and Done of the Cross

“If I remember correctly,” Stan commented one morning while we waited for breakfast, “you’re not much of a sports fan. Is that right?”

“You’re right,” I replied. “I’m not sure why, but I’ve just never had much interest in watching or participating in sports.”

“Not me,” Stan said. “I love to watch sports, just about anything that moves!”

“You like one more than the others?” I asked.

“College basketball,” Stan replied. “I love to watch it, keep track of which teams and players are doing the best, all sorts of stuff. However, there is one thing about college basketball that really bothers me, but, in a way, has a special meaning for my faith.”

“How could college basketball possibly have anything to do with your faith?” I asked.

Without answering my question, Stan asked, “You ever hear of ‘one-and-done’?”

“One and done?” I said, “Not sure. What’s that?”

“It’s actually a bit of a controversy,” Stan replied. “Some of the really good college players only play one year of college basketball before they put their name out there to try to play professional basketball.” 

“Oh,” I said, “they spend one year in college and then they’re done with that phase of playing before moving on to the pros. One and done. Is that it?”

“That’s it,” Stan replied.

“And that has something to do with your faith?” I asked. “You must be kidding me.”

“Nope,” Stan replied. “Just look at what Jesus did. He was the one who went to the cross on behalf of all, and from the cross He called out ‘It is finished.’ He had completed what His Father sent Him to do.”

“Redeem the whole world,” I commented.

“Yes,” Stan replied. “To grant life eternally with the Father for all who believe, along with granting the eternal life of knowing Jesus and the Father in an ever-deepening way while God keeps us on this side of eternity.”

“He’s the one,” I said, “and we can have what He’s done by just accepting it.”

“You got it, my friend,” Stan replied with a smile. “The one and done of the cross!”

______________________________

Bible verses to consider:

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life. John 3:16.

For the death that He died, He died to sin, once for all.  Romans 6:10.

But a certain one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, “You know nothing at all, nor do you take into account that it is expedient for you that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation should not perish.” Now this he did not say on his own initiative; but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the nation; and not for the nation only, but that He might also gather together into one the children of God who are scattered abroad. John 11:49-52.

But we do see Him who has been made for a little while lower than the angels, namely Jesus, because of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that by the grace of God He might taste death for every one. Hebrews. 2:9.

When Jesus therefore had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And He bowed His head and gave up His spirit. John 19:30.

Prayer:  Thank you, Father, that you gave your only Son so that all who believe, including me, may live with you for eternity when it’s time. Thank you that Jesus finished what you sent Him to do. Thank you, too, for those who brought me to the truth of your free and gracious provision so I could accept it. I confess that too often I do not tell others the truth of what Jesus accomplished on the cross, that He is the one, the only one, who provides the way to you. Please help me in following every step of your lead so I do tell others what you have for me to tell them so they, too, have the opportunity to accept all you have for them. Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of the one who did it all. Amen.

Think on this: Have you accepted what Jesus accomplished on the cross by being the one who provides the way for you to have life eternally with God when your time here is completed? If you have not accepted what Jesus did, why? What’s standing in the way? If you do have the assurance of salvation and redemption by accepting what Jesus did, how are you doing in telling others so they, too, have the same opportunity to accept the truth and have life eternally with God when it’s time? If you sense the need for changes in how you tell others about Jesus and His “One and done,” how is that going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?

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