A Step in the Wrong Direction

by Greg Laurie

“Now behold, two of them were traveling that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was seven miles from Jerusalem. And they talked together of all these things which had happened.”

—Luke 24:13–14

The two disciples on the road to Emmaus still felt devastated by what they saw in Jerusalem. They had witnessed Jesus hanging on that cross, and they wanted to get away. They wanted to get away from the pain, away from the trauma.

We don’t know who these two were, but we do know that one of them was named Cleopas. At the empty tomb, Jesus had given this message to the women: “Don’t be afraid! Go tell my brothers to leave for Galilee, and they will see me there” (Matthew 28:10 NLT).

But these two weren’t waiting in Galilee or hanging out in Jerusalem. They were just leaving town. And what was true of these first-century disciples is also true of us today: every step away from the cross is a step in the wrong direction.

When you’re feeling down, when you’re hurting, or when you’ve failed spiritually, that is not the time to walk away from the cross. That is the time to run to it.

Here’s the devil’s strategy. He’ll whisper something in your ear along the lines of, “Hey, you’re doing great spiritually. You’re awesome! Look at how much you read the Bible. Look at how strong you are. You don’t even need to go to church this week. You don’t need to pray. You’re good. You’re solid.”

But what he’s really saying to you is “stay away from the cross. Don’t go to the cross and repent of your sin.”

These are all lies. The devil will tell you to stay away from the cross while the Holy Spirit tells you to run to it. Go to the Father through Jesus Christ, and remember what He did for you. Ask Him to forgive you of your sin because, whether you realize it or not, you sin every day.

We always need to go to the cross.

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