We are all familiar with Jesus statement to the disciples to take up their cross and follow Him, but it’s time we put it down. Now, before anyone gets angry with me, please hear me out. There are some things that are literal and others take study. Jesus and the Word might appear to be contradictory to some. But it states facts, and the Holy Spirit is the teacher.
Jesus also said that His yoke is easy, His burden light. Like a team, yoked together. You go His way, in the right direction. Like a marriage, we aren’t to be unequally yoked, with unbelievers, that can also be a a believer who just doesn’t believe the same thing. So Jesus command to them is different since they were there. They believed in person, and saw the resurrection first hand, the ascension. They tarried to recieve the Holy Spirit inside them, whereas before, He was upon them. More like Old Testament times.
Now let’s look at believers since, of course, there were martyrs, but we have all had to accept Jesus by faith, we have the Holy Spirit in us, immediately and even the baptism in Him if we ask, which I believe is best. I found it hard to unlearn doctrine that had been taught to me by well meaning but innacurate teachers.
We are saved by grace. Nothing we do, no cross we bear. The Bible says that we are crucified with Christ, and yet we live. And that we have a new life hidden in Him. The Holy Spirit is our guide. He reveals truth as we grow and mature, and become skilled in the Word and rightly divide it. We are filled with spiritual lnowledge and gifts that we must recieve and use.
The reason Jesus came was to destroy the works of the devil. The cross most assuredly did that. Jesus was the only one who could have done it and even He fell under the weight of it. So why do we think we can carry it? It is a revered symbol of His everlasting love and Covenant and I cherish it. I used to cling to it. I tried to hold on tighter when I was in pain, to just bear it because He went through more. Mine didn’t compare, someday, I’ll be healed though. But I had to realize that I had already accepted Him and He wasn’t my crucified Christ, but alive forevermore and making intercession for me. He bore all this for me, Isaiah 53.
The power of and the message of the cross crushes sin, shame, fear. It cures sickness and disease and delivers from addiction, afflictions of all sorts. It heals the broken heart after breaking the heart to let His love in. It washes whiter than snow. It restores souls, renews minds and makes them sound. It makes us whole, provides provision and protection. The cross and the sacrifice of Christ are so purely and deeply rooted in God’s love that we have only scratched the surface of what He did for us. I challenge you to read for yourselfves what it took to prepare the Passover lamb. Even the heart was eaten. Like wise, we remember Him with Communion, and can feast on His Words.
Jesus paid an enormous price, He knew no sin but became it for us. He took our place. I will cherish and cling to the old rugged cross and exchange it for a crown. But not when I lay my burdens down, I am supposed to come to Him weary, heavy laden and cast my burdens on Him. He cares for me. He said with His last breath, that it was finished. How ironic, the symbol of suffering and shame is also one of death and life.
You may or may not agree. But I don’t think He wants me carrying things He bore for me. I love and respect His sacrifice. I was saved because of it. Healed because of it. Delivered because of it. If the Son made me free indeed, am I to be crushed under a cross my Lord stumbled with? I carry a risen Jesus, alive, alive , alive forevermore. My Jesus is alive!!!
I am not disrespectful, not rearranging Scripture. I don’t mind if someone diagrees. I just hope it makes you think. Pick up the cross, wear it, remember it. But Jesus isn’t nailing us to it when we fail, He forgives and forgets, not condemns. He could have condemned us all, but paid a ransom for us all instead. Pick up your cross, but lay it at His feet. It’s time to lay our crosses down at the feet of the one who laid down His life for us. Carrying mine made like the woman bent over, bound by the devil, Jesus carrying set me free. Please try to see that being crucified with Him is how we carried it, when we are saved it is like being resurrected and we are supposed tobe seated with Him in heavenly places. We still have a lot to learn about the one who loves us so. It’s so hard to believe when things are going wrong, but His Word is true. Rebecca Jones