The Cross was Real

Two thousand years plus haven't diminished the reality of the rugged old cross. The Lord Jesus really struggled under the weight of it up Golgotha's hill and then willingly lay down upon it so spikes could rip and tear His flesh as He was nailed to it. The blood ran rich and red and terribly real. Thorns pierced that noble brow. Excruciating pain closed those loving compassionate eyes. The pulse convulsed wildly as that old tree was dropped into the hole and stood upright so the whole world could witness Satan at his worst. And the lips trembled as He whispered, "Father, forgive them; they know not what they do." Oh, how terribly, sadly real was that pure sacrifice given for the sins of the whole world! A death as ugly and cruel as sin itself described hundreds of year before by the Prophet Isaiah, "...visage so marred more than any form nor comeliness and no beauty that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected of men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. We hid our faces from Him and esteemed Him not. Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows, but we thought Him stricken and smitten of God and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, bruised for our iniquities, with His stripes we are healed. But it pleased the Lord to bruise Him and grieve Him, to make His soul an offering for sin, to justify many. He poured out His soul unto death and was numbered with the transgressors; He bore the sin of all and made intercession for sinners." (Paraphrase of Isaiah 52:14 through Isaiah 53:12)

Make no mistake: this was not merely the appeasement of Divine whimsy. This sacrificial death of purity on a common wooden cross bridged the awful sin chasm between man and his Creator. It was the culmination of God's plan of grace that had been in place since Creation. It was singularly the most important event of all time in all the earth.

The cross was real, and we become partakers of His flesh and blood when we remember it that way. If we allow time to gloss over it, clean it up and make it less painful to remember, we are doing a disservice to the Lord's death and to our memorial celebration of it. The horror of His sacrificial death enhances the beauty and efficacy of His glorious resurrection. We must participate with Him in the passion, agony and pain of the cross if we would share with Him the victory and triumph of the resurrection. The crucifixion of the Son of God was not just an event in history; it was THE EVENT of all time. Its significance to us is daily and eternal.

Aline Edson

Published in The Old Paths Archive