Friday, May 20, 2011

How Many Crosses?

From Blog11

How many crosses will it take
To counter all my sin?
How many crosses on the wall
To make me good enough?
How many crosses, row on row,
To make me a real saint?

Can they be little, or must they be big?
Can they be wooden, or must they be gold?

How many crosses will it take?
A few? A whole house full?
How many crosses? Lord, I know.
You died on only one.

But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which1 the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.

--Galatians 6:14

Many people trust in their religious activities, such as hanging up crosses. It's fine to hang a cross, but only God can make you (or me) holy.

This particular poem and photo are public domain.


Ruthy said...


Jim Swindle said...

Thanks, Ruthy, for stopping by this blog.

As for "amazing," whenever we come face-to-face with God's truth, it's amazing.

dfish said...

He died just once, and is set down forever at the right hand of God. Hebrews 6 describes the result for those who reject that once and insist he needs to do it again the way they want it.

neat poem.

Ρωμανός ~ Romanós said...

Even as an Orthodox Christian who has a cross or two hung up in my house, and maybe a dozen ikons, I cringe when I see displays of 'crosses' such as those in the image that accompanies your excellent poem.

I think perhaps I have never forgiven myself for not taking the Cross seriously when I was a new Christian, and that's why I removed the cross I used to wear around my neck (and which all Orthodox Christians are supposed to wear).

Even the crosses I have hung at home, one very small one on the front door of my house, for example, are there to remind me how unchristlike I can be in not welcoming everyone as I should. The Cross of Jesus stands between me and my sin, as a testimony against me, but more importantly, as a testimony to His forgiveness.

I want to follow Jesus on the way of the Cross, but my flesh wants to wear the Cross but not bear it, and so, as a witness against myself, I have taken off my cross, to remind myself that I am no different from every man, even the unsaved: I no less than the next guy is a sinner, and lost, without Jesus.

And His Cross is too big for me to wear, but with His grace not too heavy for me to bear, if only I would. He laid down His life for me, and so I hope to always be willing to lay down my life for my brothers. John 3:16 and 1 John 3:16 go together. And by grace alone, which is alone sufficient, I can do all through Christ who lives in me, by faith.

Jim Swindle said...

dfish, you're right, of course, that Jesus died only once, and that what he did in his death is finished, not being repeated (except in the sense that we die with him). I reject the Roman Catholic view which sees Jesus as continuing to be sacrificed through the Mass.
Yet I don't think Hebrews 6 is speaking of that. I think it's speaking of those who fall away from thinking Jesus is enough, and who return to thinking that they need to offer their own Jewish sacrifices in order to reach God.
Still, Hebrews 6 is a warning to anyone who considers abandoning Jesus for something else.
Romanós, your comment is wonderful. We're not made holy by what we wear, nor by what we hang on the wall, nor by what marks we put on ourselves, nor by what pious words we use. We're made holy by the Lord...and his holiness repeatedly reminds us of our own weakness.

Bluebell Books said...

lovely wonders.
bless you...

Bluebell Books said...

lovely wonders.
bless you...

Bluebell Books said...

Check out our short story slam today,

We love creativity, your input is valued.

Happy Friday!
Hope to see you in!