Especially for this weekend we provide some space for our friend George Churchgoer. Hope you value the message…


Seen on a sign outside a church in a nearby town…

“The key to heaven was hung on the cross.”

YouTube online is still a pretty amazing tool. Videos from all over, over 14 billion, on every topic imaginable.

Yes, some videos there are about pretty racy topics, but most aren’t. Want to know how to install a certain sink? How to play a certain card game? How to do almost ANYTHING? See a test drive of a new car? Get a review of a new movie?

Google is the top search Internet engine, but YouTube is actually #2. People always search for things there. Like reasons for our Christian faith and inspiration to stay the course.

And we’re not exactly talking Billy Graham here. While there are plenty of “lectures” on YouTube there are other inspirational sermons and messages that will immediately grab your attention.

Here’s an example below from 2019. It’s received over 268,000 views – YouTubers love to count views. Over 268,000 sounds like a lot of views (and it is) but the record for a YouTube video is over a staggering 10 BILLION views for the Baby Shark Dance.

Yes, you’ve heard this tune – “bay-bee SHARK do do do do do do…” Hey, we can’t explain it either…

Pastor Alistair Begg is originally from Scotland but preaches at a church in Cleveland, Ohio. The video is under four minutes, not long, but the message is so simple that anyone can understand it. And it’s perfect for this Holy Week. Hope you take a few minutes to watch it before continuing here…

C’mon, did you really view it?

OK we’ll assume you watched…if you didn’t you missed out on a few laughs and an amazing viewpoint.

As we again mark the ignominious death and glorious resurrection of our Lord Jesus the question is always “Why?” Why did God the Father sacrifice His own Son? He could have easily just wiped the bad guys from the face of the Earth and the good guys would have lived happily ever after.

The show of absolute force would have been the “shock and awe” of all time and everyone remaining would have immediately become believers for life. Right?

But God has never worked that way.

He actually did try that once. We call it Noah’s Great Flood. The only people left were Noah and his family – and a whole lot of animals.

And everything was perfect after that, right? Of course not – checked the headlines lately? God never tried that strategy again.

So how do each of us, every individual on the planet, get saved for eternal life? How do we overcome the sins we all commit?

Is it all just faith alone? You believe and follow the rules of the Bible, the Golden Rule, every rule, and do them faithfully – that’s enough, right? It’s all you, you, you.

Or you also perform as many good works as you can – helping others, tithing and giving to the poor, going that extra mile. You, you, you.

Surely THAT is enough to be saved, yes?

Or is it just as simple as – the Man on the Middle Cross said I could come.

We remember the story – as Jesus was crucified there were two criminals hung there with Him, one on either side. Both were “guilty as sin” and deserved punishment – maybe not crucifixion but punishment all the same.

While the one derided the Lord and admonished Him to just save them all, the other knew exactly who was beside him. He simply asked…

“Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” – Luke 23:42 NIV

We can only imagine what our very human Lord was dealing with at that moment, nailed to that cross struggling just to breathe with his flesh slowly dying. But He turned to that second man also hanging there and said…

“Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.” – Luke 23:43 NIV

That’s all it took. When the second man arrived in Heaven all he needed to say was – the man on the middle cross said I could come. The criminal stuff was immediately forgotten.

How many of us stare into the mirror and count our accomplishments, like some tally for an accountant? We work to pad our eternal resume or further fill out our heavenly LinkedIn page. Why?

Because it makes US look good. How much of our lives are devoted to making ourselves look good?

As Pastor Begg said in his video sermon, our focus shouldn’t be on US. It should always be on the Cross – it should always be on HIM.

The second man above, in his case at near death, focused on the Lord – and was saved.

As we mark this latest Holy Week let us endeavor to place our own focus where it needs to be and stay away from mirrors except to comb our hair and check our clothes.

And we’ll glorify HIM, not ourselves. Always remember who is in charge…


From George Churchgoer

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