Christians are called upon by God to crucify the flesh. “And they that are of Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with the passions and the lusts thereof” (Gal. 5:24, ASV). Without doing so, the person who wants to be saved by God won’t be; this is because his (her) life is plagued with a sinful way of thinking. This is called a fleshly way of thinking, and that way of thinking is the elevating of self in one’s heart. When this occurs, one does not allow the Lord God to reign. Paul wrote, “And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to the which also ye were called in one body; and be ye thankful” (Col. 3:15).
The effect of sin in one’s life is a simple matter of what a person wants to do and not what the Lord wants done. Called upon by the Lord to crucify the flesh is not easy, but it is imperative that we do as much. “…but like as he who called you is holy, be ye yourselves also holy in all manner of living; because it is written, Ye shall be holy; for I am holy” (1 Peter 1:15-16).
To help us reflect on why it is so important, it is good to think about the word crucifixion. For a great many people today, the word has more associated with sacrifice than what was understood with the use of the word in the days of Jesus, or Paul. The word crucify is a word that conveys the horrors of torture and death.
Think about your great struggle (struggles) right now. It is as if you are being tortured continually because you seem to not be able to shake the burden that plagues you. Are you on the verge of succumbing to sin? If so, think about Jesus carrying His cross to the area where He was going to die. He knew that for the sins of the world He was to die and, if you will accommodate me for the moment, perhaps you might allow that He thought of you as He felt the weight of the lumber on His torn-up back and shoulders, splintering Him as He took each step. He went through with this because of His love for His creation and because the sin so heavily burdened against us we have no true understanding of; it is damning and it is its own torture, horror and execution.
“I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I that live, but Christ living in me: and that life which I now live in the flesh I live in faith, the faith which is in the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself up for me” (Galatians 2:20).
When one thinks about the crucifixion, and reflects on the seriousness of sin, then looking at Calvary can be seen in a new sort of way.
C – stands for Christ, and that which He did for me (2 Cor. 5:21).
L – stands for His Love, an incomprehensible love, but a love that seeks mine and your best interest (John 3:16).
V – stands for His Victory over sin (John 16:33).
A – stands for His Assurance that the path He walked is the path to God. A lot of people walk aimlessly, though the saved do not.
R – stands for Redemption, while sin had us in gripping bondage, Jesus came to release that grip (Acts 2:38).
Y – stands for YOU, because now is the time for salvation (2 Cor. 6:2).