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A Sermon on Galatians 6:14

But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. (ESV)

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Have you heard a Christmas sermon on the death of Christ? It seems like an odd mix, but in this sermon on Galatians 6:14, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explains the importance of the cross to the birth of Jesus. He argues that you cannot understand the birth and incarnation of Christ— the reason we celebrate Christmas— without the cross. Why? First, the Messiah’s sufferings are prophesied throughout the entire Old Testament in passages such as Isaiah 53 and Genesis 3. Second, the cross was the real object of Jesus’ incarnation. Jesus was born for the express purpose of being the perfect sacrifice for the sins of all humanity. In this way, He was born to die, and this makes Him unique among any other person who has been born. Third, only the cross explains some of the audacious things that Jesus claimed and that were recorded in the gospels as being said about Him. Additionally, the cross was the lowest point that the Son of God has come to. He was enthroned in Heaven, yet He left His rightful place to come to earth and live the life that no one else has— a perfect one. He did all of this with the knowledge that one day, He would die an unjust death for the sins of the world so that those who accepted His sacrifice could have forgiveness from their sins. This is the reason we celebrate Christmas and is, as Dr. Lloyd-Jones reminds us, why the cross is central to correctly understanding Jesus’ birth. 

Additional Scripture Translations

Galatians 6:14, New American Standard Bible

14But far be it from me to boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.

Galatians 6:14, King James Version

14But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.

About Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.