If you’ve been following this blog long enough, you may recall something I posted a few years ago about the wooden crosses I used to make by hand. If you’re interested, you can find that post HERE.
The process was tedious, especially using sandpaper to shape each cross after using a coping saw to cut the small piece of wood into a very rough lower case t-shape. But I loved doing it and would probably still be doing it except for the fact it got to be too rough on these aging hands.
I quit making walking sticks for the same reason. I needed (and still need) my hands for other things. Like playing guitar and bass. And keying new novel manuscripts into my laptop.
As a Christian, I’ve long understood the significance of wearing a cross, even though a number of people probably wear them because they simply like the shape. I wouldn’t put it past some people to wear a cross superstitiously–as a good luck charm.
The cross is an important Christian symbol because it reminds us of Jesus’s crucifixion. I’ve read recently that the Romans didn’t invent crucifixion, but took it to a new level of cruelty. Anyone who watched The Passion of Christ or the ninth episode of The Bible miniseries (or was it the eighth?) got a too-realistic depiction of the way Jesus suffered and died.
One thing I’ve become more aware of over the years is the importance of the crucifix to Roman Catholics. A crucifix, as most of you know, depicts Christ hanging on the cross. I honestly don’t know whether He’s dead yet. There’s something to be said for a reminder of the horrible way Jesus suffered and died to accomplish God’s mission of bringing salvation to mankind.
You may not be aware of this, but Protestants and Evangelicals don’t generally wear crucifixes or value them the way Roman Catholics do. They prefer to emphasize an empty cross because Jesus’s death as payment for the sins of mankind was only half of His mission. He also came to give eternal life, and the depiction of His death on the cross fails to tell “the rest of the story.”
So a regular cross–an empty one–is a reminder that Jesus’s mission didn’t end there. He had to be taken down and placed in a borrowed tomb. It wasn’t until three days later when the stone sealing the tomb was found removed on the third day and angels announced His resurrection that Jesus began appearing to His followers. Alive again. Human death had been conquered, and the second part of His mission was complete. His Believers now had the assurance of eternal life.
I’ve never seen a necklace depicting an empty tomb. I can’t imagine what one would look like. But the empty cross and the empty tomb go together like hand in glove.
I have every respect for Believers who prefer to wear a crucifix. Especially if they understand and believe in the whole story.
What about you? Are you a cross wearer or a crucifix wearer? What does it signify to you? How about leaving a comment?
NOTE: Various people have complained about not being able to find or leave comments. Go all the way to the bottom of this post, beneath my “Best regards, Roger.” On the very bottom line of that last section just above the previous post you’ll see “Leave a Comment” if yours will be the first or “X Comments,” where X denotes the number of existing comments.
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