‘I am not ashamed of the gospel’. We all need to be able to say that with Paul. Yet shame is the very basis for this overwhelming power of God to be enabled.
‘If one is ashamed to confess me before men, then I will be ashamed to confess him before my Father’.
The shame of the gospel is OUR shame that the gospel reveals to us. We do not want that shame to be seen by others, so we hide it, we avoid the truth of the gospel. Conversely, the word says, ‘if a man’s works are good, he will come into the light, but if they are bad, he will (choose to) remain in the darkness’. (John 3-21). [all ‘quotes’ are paraphrased].
So the POWER involved, is the power to separate the wheat from the chaff, those who want separation from the world, from those who don’t. And the active ingredient here is PRIDE and the FEAR of being considered foolish by others. [God chose the foolish things of the world to bring to nought…]
So the shame of the cross is our shame that Jesus bore for us when he hung on the tree. It is the shame of sinful things done from a sinful life. It is the shame of rejecting truth and love and releasing the inner ‘murderer’ to exert his sin engorged will in/on the world. Yes, we killed Christ from the beginning. We joined the ranks of sinful human activity.
He hung there, naked on the cross, and this spectacle reduces us also to spiritual nakedness, and our sin is on show for all to see, exposed to eternal truth, eternal love. And this nakedness is necessary so that we can be re-clothed in Him, should we accept Him.
SHAME is something considered to be earned by the weak and by the sinful. It can have various implications depending on culture, not necessarily based in truth but more-so aligned with this same idea of it opposing the integrity of pride and ego and the ‘status quo.’
The dictionary says “The painful feeling arising from the consciousness of something dishonourable, improper, ridiculous, etc, done by oneself or another. Disgrace, ignominy.” [Ignominy is disgrace, dishonour, public contempt].
Yes, we admit to the shame of our sin, we see him bearing it on the cross for us, so as to release us from its dreadful effects and to join us to Himself in proclaiming that love is the very nature of life itself, which is now freely given and available to all who will accept it, who will accept Him. Our disgrace and shame have been removed, we have been forgiven and placed in a position to rise with Him. “Only believe.” Believe the Truth.