Welcome to Becomning Closer! 

Communion Meditations (2023)


Why the Cross?

Originally scheduled for September 24

It seems odd to some people that the symbol of Christianity is a cross. Crucifixion is a painful and humiliating way to die, yet millions of Christians proudly display it as the sign of their belief. Why this symbol? It is for the death of Christ that we wear it. Why is Christ’s death so important?
God is righteous and just; it is one of his attributes and he cannot be untrue to himself. Righteousness demands atonement for sin, a lesson planted firmly in the Jews. But if all righteousness - pure righteousness - is to be fulfilled, then the sacrifice of atonement must be pure also. The standard of righteousness is God’s standard, not ours. Only the sinless man could be the atonement we need for righteousness.
God is righteous, but God is also love. His objective is not just to atone for us (and then let us be) but rather reconcile us to himself. He is not interested in burying the hatchet - he wants to eliminate the hatchet entirely. So atonement is necessary - but not sufficient. Reconciliation is required. Atonement requires that the price be paid; reconciliation that it be paid willingly.
There is no greater love than this: that a man die for his friends. Christ’s sacrifice was not a spur of the moment thing. It was planned. Crucifixion is not only a painful death but a shameful one. It marked you as outside the law. Worse yet, this crucifixion was accompanied by abandonment and betrayal. That is the measure of God's love for us - a love which stretches beyond atonement to reconciliation.
Christ frequently tells us to "take up your cross and follow me." If nothing else, the cross is our great example. If we claim to be his disciples; then what is there that we should not be willing to do?
The crucifixion — the sacrifice of Christ’s body and blood — is what we are to remember today in communion. In the bread we should see his body hanging on the cross; in the cup, his blood. As you partake, remember. Remember that he died for you, atoning for your sins. Remember that he reconciled you to God Almighty, so that you are now a child of God. Remember that he has set you the example of sacrifice. Think on these things as you partake.

Previous     Home     Next