Sacrifice, Salvation, Victory

As I ran this morning of Good Friday, I considered what this day and this weekend meant for me as a Christian. It comes down to three words: sacrifice, salvation and victory.

I reflected upon two verses from the Bible, Gospel of John which for me are the essence of these three days. One is John 3:16-17 (NIV): “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” The other is John 15:13 (NIV) “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”

And today, it is the cross, a simple but powerful symbol that gives us all, Christians or not, a vision of what it means to sacrifice for the salvation of others, in order that they may achieve redemption, spiritual victory. It is why I believe that cross currently standing upon Mt. Soledad in San Diego serves two purposes. It reminds us of the One, Jesus Christ, who hung upon that cross but it also reminds us of those men and women who answered the call to service as articulated in Isaiah 6:8 (NIV) “Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”

I began to realize how Jesus Christ and His simple “act of love” thousands of years ago set a precedent that so many to this day have, as we say in church, “taken up their own cross,” to sacrifice for others.

Since the days of Lexington and Concord, America has been blessed with these special, exceptional men and women who have followed the example of Jesus, stepped up and said, “Send me.” The sacrifice of the cross by Jesus was accepted by those He commissioned to Matthew 28:19 (NIV) “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”

I’d like to share with you what happened to the original Apostles of Jesus Christ. From the book, The Signature of God, by Grant Jeffrey:

Matthew suffered martyrdom in Ethiopia, killed by a sword wound.

Mark died in Alexandria, Egypt, after being dragged by horses through the streets until he was dead.
Luke was hanged by idolatrous priests on an olive tree in Greece as a result of his tremendous preaching to the lost.

18 COMMENTS

  1. Thank you Colonel West.I have been on this journey for 69 yrs.It could be over before I push the post button.But I will shake your hand on the other side.You are a good man.My church that I attend is about 90 % black.They to ,are good honest people .The only thing I dont like is they are singing chorus.
    I like to sing about a old rugged cross.There is power in the blood,stuff like that.15 minites of singing I Love him ,,,does not do alot for me.
    When I was very young,a man and a women did things to me that have made life not as good as other people.But this I remember ,thru 2 weeks of sexual torture .Jesus loves the little children.that kept me .Now at 69 ,im still one if HIS children.
    Gonna push post now .Guess HIM is not ready for me yet .

  2. God Bless you friend. Thank you for not being afraid to speak out for the sake of our Lord and savior, Jesus Christ. Blessed Easter to you & yours!

  3. Col West – thx for sharing your thoughts on this day when Christians soberly reflect on the cost of their personal Salvation

    I snapped up the “oh so applicable” image on your article, when I tweeted today ….

    #HappyGoodFriday Heaven is for Real, & my HUGE COST ticket there has been paid for, but not by me by #SinlessSonOfGod pic.twitter.com/xTP5cQgipu

  4. Col. You and Yours Have a blessed Easter. Thank you and your brethren for their service and sacrifice. God Bless you

  5. Dear brother West you are a true light shining across the fruited plain of this great nation…….may God richly bless you and your family in everything you do Sir……….

  6. Thank you for boldly stating your testimony and sharing your faith in our Lord Jesus Christ! It was a true blessing and encouragement to all of us that believe in Christ.

  7. While I believe that you were chosen by God, and not vice versa, I truly admire your conviction and your willingness to share your faith journey with the world. May God bless you and keep you in the one true faith. A blessed Easter to you and yours. Keep up the good work!!

  8. Could you die for a lie? To be burned alive, hunted like virmen. Imprisoned…for a lie? The apostles are my link to the Christ. They lead to reason. Only a risen Christ could lead those men to the cross. Gods plan is perfect. He has no forethought.

  9. This testament to your Christian Faith really took my breath away….so beautiful. Yes, you would make a very good U.S. President and leader of our great country.

  10. LTC West: Would sound awfully nice to hear these words spoken by you in a Weekly Radio Address of the President of the United States of America.

  11. Dear Mr. West,
    Thank you for your humble but powerful message. Thank you for spreading the word the truth and the light so others can find redemption and the conviction to fight to preserve our republic. God Bless you and your family. God bless America.

  12. Col. West thank you so much for your testimony. We need more strong men and women to stand up for their beliefs and their relationship with God. I pray that you and your family have a day dedicated to Christ and His death and resurrection and you will be blessed by God for Him. Thank you so much!!! PS could you run for president?

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