Saturday, March 13, 2010

THE CROSS

I was doing some Bible study and came across a thought provoking revelation. There are several symbols we use to denote our Christianity. Among them, and possibly the most popular is the cross necklace. I can't get away from the revelation I received that we have lost sight of the purpose of wearing that cross. Is it because we want to be bold in our witness and let others know we are Christians? Is it that we like the symbol of the cross, what it stands for, and want to wear it? Is it just a charming and popular thing to wear? After all, they can be quite fashionable and unique in style. Mine has open lines in it, somewhat decorative.

In Jesus' day, death by crucifixion was the most degrading and cruelest way to die. It was reserved for the lowest of the low. Who receives the death penalty in our day? The ones who commit the most heinous crimes.

My point here is, for Christians, wearing the cross is not something to be taken lightly. It not only symbolizes the horror Christ endured for our sins, but it signifies that we are willing to take up our cross and follow Him, even to death.

"Then He said to them all: If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me." Luke 9:23 (NIV)


4 comments:

Gregg said...

I think I would be careful here. We are warned against "graven images." We are also warned against placing undue interest in things, like a cross.

Wearing a cross cannot convey what Christ experienced as He died for us. We have a tendency to focus on the physical and yes it was horrendous.

He suffered more in becoming sin for us as he suffered the wrath of God upon him. That is what was wrong about the Passion movie of Mel Gibson - it focused so heavily on the pain, the blood, the gore, the tortue - with no mention of "he who knew no sin, became sin for us."

Also wearing the cross does not signify our willingness to pick up our cross and follow him to death.

I love that passage from Luke, I trust I live it everyday, yet I know I fall short. I love my God, I worship Him, I have given him my life in its fullest - yet I have never worn a cross.

Jewelery is usually beautiful. Certainly there is a "market" for manufacturing and selling beautiful crosses, I hesitate to find it significant for true believers.

The test of my obedience and submission is not measured by what I wear but what I do, and by what I say, and even by what I don't do.

I respect your opinion very highly. This is your blog so I am mindful and respectful of that. The invitation to leave a comment includes the possibility that my thinking about this might not be agreeable.

Thank you for letting me comment and thank you for provoking my thoughts.

Brian Ray Todd said...

I agree with Gregg on the truth that the Second Commandment (Exodus 20:4) that we should not worship any graven images should be practiced int he church, but personally don't think that this is what the Cross symbolizes in necklaces wore by Christians & Pastors, car decals, Tee shirt prints, Church steeples and over the Alter inside the Sanctuary. Surely, the Cross could be mis-used as a graven image or taken in vain as a meaningless piece of jewrey or symbol to some. But I believe that there are honorable applications of displaying our faith in the Cross, to keep our main focuas on the main thing - Jesus Christ, our Savior & Lord. God looks at the heart, and desires that we live out that faith in the sight of those in the darkness of sin and unbelief that seeds of Truth in the Gospel of Christ may be planted , watered and ministered with the help and in the power of the Holy Spirt. In righteousness, we preach Christ crucified. I beleive that this is what the Shrink is talking about.

1 Corinthians 1:22-24 "For Jews request a sign, and Greeks seek after wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God."

Thank you for the thought provoking post and comment.

Sharing God's Love said...

Great message on the Cross. We discussed this same topic in our Sunday School class. Very interesting!

Amrita said...

In my country wearing a cross makes a very visible statement about who I am. In India your religious identity is very important. So I sometime s wear a cross and buy any Christian jewelry I see ( affordable one) because I feel I can wear it meaningfully rather than just a fashion acessory.