Let me invite you into some of the dialogue and thought-processes that go on in my head. Today I would like to write about the Cross, and specifically, about Christ on the Cross…
Growing up, I was always uncomfortable with seeing people who wore “crucifixes”, the pendant form of a cross WITH Christ hanging on it. Or quite often, the crucifix was boldly up front and centre on the main wall of the auditorium of many churches (usually Catholic churches). I felt offended, to be honest, by the fact that Jesus was up there hanging on the cross. I would say to myself (and to others who were around at the time), “I hate when I see the cross with Jesus hanging lifelessly on it. Don’t people get it? Jesus is not dead. He’s alive!” and I carried this attitude that it was disgusting, depressing, and morbid to see people wearing these crucifixes or seeing them hanging on a wall in a church.
I no longer feel this way.
Well, I met Christ intimately ON the cross, as He lay dying upon it, and I found myself being crucified there upon that very cross WITH HIM. I met the dying Christ, and my heart has never been the same since.
I now see Christ on a cross and I weep with affection for this Man. I see this bloody tree as the place of meeting. It has become the altar of intimacy for me, in which I finally came to love the Christ, the Messiah. I died with Him there. This is where I came to love Him, at last.
Yes, Jesus Christ is no longer on the Cross. He is surely alive and seated at the right hand of the Father, on the Throne. But who can ever forget the place where you first gave your heart to the one you love? You can never forget it, and your heart will always long for this place, this meeting place. It will always hold a special place in you heart.
In another sense, He is on the cross every day of our lives. The thing with the cross is that we never leave it, this side of Heaven. We continually return, daily, to our cross, to His cross. We never leave this continual death, as we are called to continual resurrected life which is born out of death, every time.
Are we called to daily resurrection?
Well, this can only come with daily death.
With every day, there comes night. Then the morning arrives with the sun rising again upon us. Every day, without stop. The cycle of death and new life.
In reality, Christ hung on the cross once, and sin was paid for once, but in our lives, essentially, it happens every day. We die daily. So we can be borne anew, each and every day into new life, the life of Christ.
This is a bit of insight into why I now love to see Christ on the Cross, and the Crucifix is an offence that I now embrace with a whole heart.
Selah. Think upon that.