Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Cross (as in the Cross of Christ) (08/17/06)
- TITLE: Beams of Love
By Amy Nicholson
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If we are at all familiar with the story of the gospel we know that nearly two thousand years ago a man named Jesus Christ died on a Roman cross in a place called Calvary.
Although many other men of His time died on Roman crosses, Jesus was the Son of God.
That fact made His crucifixion stand out from all the other crucifixions in history. The world has never been the same since that day. Christians believe that Christ died to save sinners for Himself.
Seeing the cross reminds us of Christ’s great sacrifice for us. It also serves to remind us of how we are to respond to that sacrifice: through obedience. We are to keep the Commandments and, specifically the two greatest Commandments.
The cross consists of two beams: a vertical beam and a horizontal beam. The vertical beam stretches from the earth to Heaven. It symbolizes God’s love for us and, ideally, our love for Him. This beam is the longer of the two and represents the greatest Commandment: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” (NIV Matt. 22:37)
The horizontal beam extends out from the vertical beam to the ends of the earth. It symbolizes our love for our fellow man, as outlined in the second Commandment: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (NIV Matt. 22: 39) This beam is shorter than the vertical beam and should, therefore, be secondary in our mind to our love for the Father.
When we see the cross on the church steeple, on a necklace around our mother’s neck, or even in the shadow the window mullions cast on the wall, we remember two things. We remember what Christ did out of love for us and what we are to do out of our love for Him.
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