Home> The Lower Lights>March 2005





  Alan Jones, Editor

  (734) 942-7956




"Brightly beams our Father's mercy

From the lighthouse evermore;

But to us He gives the keeping

Of the light along the shore."

       Published monthly by the church of Christ, 35900 Palmer Road, P.O. Box 86-233, Westland, MI  48186     

Volume 4                                                                     March 2005                                                                                      No9 




Jesus said, “And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to Myself.”  He said this to indicate the kind of death by which He was to die- crucifixion. (Jn 12:32-33)  Have you medi-tated on the death of Jesus- can you think about the following and not feel the pull of Jesus, a pull that makes you want to be His disciple?

Jesus’ humility

You can’t think about Jesus’ cross without reflecting on who was being crucified- God (deity), the Creator of the universe. (Jn 1:1-3)  “Although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.  Being found in appearance as a man, he humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” (Phil 2:6-8)  Doesn’t the thought of One so high, powerful, and authoritative becoming so low, powerless, and, and obedient move you to want to follow Him?

Jesus’ suffering

Have you thought about how much Jesus’ suffered?  He was scourged prior to being lifted up from the earth (Jn 19:1)- severely beaten with a whip that had fragments of bone and metal in it to rip His flesh.  A crown of sharp thorns was driven into His head. (Jn 19:2)  Soldiers attached His hands and feet to wooden beams with large nails before lifting Him up to feel the weight of His body tearing against the nails.  He agonized this way for several hours, pulling Himself up

to gasp for a breath and then letting Himself back down, with excruciating pain in every movement.  He became extremely thirsty due to dehydration. (Jn 19:28)  In the torment of that dark hour He despaired, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” (Mt 27:46)  Have you realized, as Paul did, that He endured all this suffering for you?  (Gal 2:20)  Aren’t you drawn to Jesus by how He agonized for your sins?  Doesn’t His suffering make you want to become His disciple?

Jesus’ love

Why would Jesus voluntarily suffer and lay down His life for you, for me and for all men?  The songwriter J.G. Dailey answered well when he wrote, “Why did He drink the bitter cup, of sorrow, pain, and woe, Why on the cross be lifted up?  Because He loved me so!”   John put it simply, “We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us.” (1 Jn 3:16)  What affect should such love have on you?  Paul said such love compelled him to be a Christian- “For the love of Christ controls us, having concluded this, that one died for all, therefore all died; and He dies for all, so that they who live might no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and rose again on their behalf.” (2 Cor 5:14-15)  Can’t you feel the pull of Jesus’ love?  Doesn’t His death for you make you want to live for Him? – to love Him because He first loved you. (1 Jn 4:19)


            The cross of Jesus is His powerful magnet.  If you are not a Christian, please meditate more on how Jesus was lifted up and may His death almost 2000 years ago draw you to Him today.


“Church” is marketed today just like any business.  Churches use commercials to bring people in.  Some say, “Come for the people, they are so friendly.”  Others say, “The music is great” or “The speaker is so dynamic.”  Casual clothes, contemporary worship, and convenient times are also a typical part of the advertising mix. The Palmer Road church of Christ totally rejects the idea of marketing the spiritual by an appeal to the worldly.  In fact, we totally reject the idea of marketing ourselves.  In the 21st century, we still hold to the 1st century approach of reaching people for Jesus, “We do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus as Lord.” (2 Cor 4:5)

            Again, Jesus said, “And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to Myself.” (Jn 12:32; see the front page).  Jesus’ desire was that men be drawn to Him, not to His disciples.- to become followers of Him rather than followers of His followers.  And, can you think of greater drawing power than the cross of Jesus?    How can friendly people, pleasing music, charismatic speakers, comfortable clothes, an appealing worship style, or convenient times all combined “hold a candle” to the attraction of Jesus’ cross?

            Here’s how Paul made disciples in the 1st century in Corinth:  “And when I came to you, brethren, I did not come with superiority of speech or of wisdom, proclaiming to you the testimony of God.  For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified.  I was with you in weakness and in fear and in much trembling, and my message and my preaching


were not in persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith would not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God.” (1 Cor 2:1-5)

There was no advertising campaign in Corinth to promote a church, but rather preaching to promote a Savior.  Converts were made by the message and not the messenger.  Men placed their faith in Jesus rather than Paul.  “Many of the Corinthians when they heard were believing and being baptized.” (Acts 18:8).  They became disciples of their Savior and the message of His cross was the power behind their spiritual lives.  They were not just convinced by the wisdom of men to become “church members”.

            In the 21st century, the Palmer Road church of Christ has no advertising campaign to promote our church, but rather preaches to promote a Savior.  Our aim in preaching, whether by speak-ing or writing, is not to impress you with us, but to impress you with Him.  Our goal is to convince you by the gospel to place your faith in Jesus, not to convince you by our marketing to become a part of our church.  We pray that, like the Corin-thians, you will believe the message of Jesus and Him crucified and be baptized for the remission of your sins- that from that time forward you will be a disciple of Jesus and that the message of His cross will be the power behind you spiritual life. 

If we can assist you in being drawn to the Savior and His cross, please call, write, or email us- or visit us in person at one of our services.


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