Crucifixion

April 14, 2017

“Christ, crucified and risen, is our Paschal lamb, our Passover. United to Him in baptism, our life becomes an unending deliverance from evil…Evil is overcome only by good, which the Son of God Himself demonstrated on the Cross and which believers are called to emulate.” (Orthodox Study Bible, 1 Corinthians 5:6-8, Romans 12:19-21)

 

“The death and resurrection of Christ contain the utter and complete emptiness of hell, the threat of non-being and meaninglessness, the absurdity of suffering and of injured innocence. They also contain the fullness of paradise, the complete joy of existence and the ecstasy of transcendent love. Everything is there.” (Father Stephen Freeman)

 

“I believe that Christians make a serious mistake when we begin to speak first about God rather than first about Christ and His death on the Cross and resurrection from the dead. It is a mistake because it presumes we know something about God that is somehow “prior” to those events. We do not, or, if we think we do, we are mistaken. The death and resurrection of Christ are the alpha and the omega of God’s self-revelation to the world. Nothing in all of creation is extraneous or irrelevant to those events.” (Father Stephen Freeman)

 

“The heart of Christianity is a myth which is also a fact. The old myth of the Dying God, without ceasing to be myth, comes down from the heaven of legend and imagination to the earth of history. It happens—at a particular date, in a particular place, followed by definable historical consequences. We pass from a Balder or an Osiris, dying nobody knows when or where, to a historical Person crucified (it is all in order) under Pontius Pilate.” (C. S. Lewis)

 

“Now, it is clear that we are not, humanly speaking, present to the historical event itself, so that we can feel the dust beneath our feet, hear the jeers of the soldiers, or shiver in the sudden chill of the sun's eclipse. We do not need to be. We revel in the fact that God stepped into history, and we affirm the events described in the Scriptures to be fully accurate. And the power of Christ's crucifixion moves through all time, because the One crucified was fully God as well as fully man. Through the use of Scripture in the Church we become present to the everlasting mystical reality of Christ crucified and risen again.” (Fr. John Hainsworth)

 

“We marvel at the paradox of God suffering on the Cross—the strange contrast between His humiliation and His eternal glory. The Crucifixion is not about the suffering of a good man; it is about the suffering of God Himself. Behind the image of this broken and humiliated figure, the Church still discerns the Second Person of the Holy Trinity.” (Archimandrite Vassilios Papavassiliou)

 

“Our Lord’s cry, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” is a pointer to Psalm 21/22, which is a clear reminder that our Lord was crucified by His own will. For centuries, too many Christians have looked upon the Crucifixion as a tragedy, and they have despised and hated those who put Jesus to death. In so doing, they have completely ignored the very clear biblical teaching that the Crucifixion was not a murder for which we must seek justice, but a voluntary sacrifice in order that we may all have forgiveness.” (Archimandrite Vassilios Papavassiliou)

 

“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me,” taken from the opening line of Psalm 22, should be interpreted in light of the entire psalm. Read as a whole, this psalm is a prayer of anguish but also a confession of trust in God. And it concludes with an expression of praise and thanksgiving for deliverance by God. These words reflect Jesus’ persistent trust in God even amidst the experience of darkness and the apparent failure of His mission.” (Fr. Emmanuel Clapsis)

 

 “In the Crucified Christ, God does not remain a distant spectator of the undeserving suffering of the innocent but He participates in their suffering through the Cross and plants hope in the life of all afflicted persons through the Resurrection.” (Fr. Emmanuel Clapsis) “In our daily life, we must regularly “crucify” sinful desires that keep us from following Christ. This, too, is a kind of dying with Him. And yet the focus of Christianity is not on dying but on living.” (Life Application Study Bible, Galatians 2:19.20)

 

 “Christ accepts death on the Cross neither to receive the Father's punishment on our behalf, nor to satisfy the Father's need for blood-justice (as if God would demand such things), but so that by entering death as the divine Son of God, He can destroy this last enemy, which is death itself." (Orthodox Study Bible, Matthew 27:50)

 

 “Is Christianity against rational thinking? Christians clearly do believe in using their minds to weigh the evidence and make wise choices...no amount of human knowledge can replace replace or bypass Christ’s work on the cross. If it could, Christ would be accessible only to the intellectually gifted and well educated, and not to ordinary people or to children.” (Life Application Study Bible, 1 Corinthians 1:27)

 

“This is the point of the Christian faith. God knew there was no chance for us to ever be good enough or to follow enough rules to gain His approval. Since we could never work our way up to God through religion, God came down to us! Christ came to us and went to the cross and took on Himself all our sins and failures and crucified man-made religion so we could experience a full relationship with the heavenly Father.” (Ryan Shook & Josh Shook)

 

“We can spend a lifetime accumulating human wisdom and yet never learn how to have a personal relationship with God. We must come to the crucified and risen Christ to receive eternal life and the joy of a personal relationship with our Savior.” (Life Application Study Bible, 1 Corinthians 1:19)

 

“Only through Christ are we freed from suffering and bondage to sin…We must daily commit our sinful tendencies to God’s control, daily crucify them, and moment by moment draw on the Spirit’s power to overcome them. (Orthodox Study Bible, Mark 5:25-29, Life Application Study Bible, Galatians 5:24)

 

“...we take a symbol that in its origin represented everything horrific and which later became associated simply with suffering and we hold that very symbol up to the world as a boast, as a symbol of triumph. If we were to make a parallel in today’s terms it would be like exalting or wearing around our necks on a gold chain a guillotine, an electric chair or the chemicals used in lethal injection. This would seem crazy and contradictory—a horrific device adorned and exalted! But that is precisely the miracle of the Cross and of our entire Faith.” ” (Father Thomas Loya)

 

"So, what is our cross today? Maybe your cross is nothing more than trying to live the Christian life despite the fact that others laugh at you because of it. Bearing insults patiently is a cross. Some of us bear the cross of family members or friends who need extra help and support. Some of us bear the cross of illness or addiction. Whatever our cross is, we must bear it patiently.” (Abouna Justin Rose)

 

"Attraction to the way of the Lord is a noble calling. His self-giving path of the Cross turns out to be truly glorious. Yet in the so-called real world we see others disdaining self-denial, take advantage of givers and labeling them as weak. They may ask us, “Why do you let others run roughshod over you?” Let us always remember that our Lord reveals the Cross as life (Luke 6:29).” (Dynamis 10/21/2014)

 

“The incentive to peacemaking is love, but it degenerates into appeasement whenever justice is ignored. To forgive and to ask for forgiveness are both costly exercises. All authentic Christian peacemaking exhibits the love and justice - and so the pain - of the cross." (John R. W. Stott)

 

“For many Christians, the experience of truth has been a narrowing experience, and in one sense this is right. All those questions—religions, sins, frustrations, explorations—finally ended up with Jesus. Like following the inside of a cone, all experiences funneled to a point, and at that point was Jesus on the cross for my sin. The error, however, is when we stop here and move no further. For our experience of truth to grow, we must move through the cross back out into the same reality—the same questions, the same world—with a different perspective.” (John Fischer)