5th April 2012

When I Survey The Wondrous Cross

“Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.”
Matthew 28:16-17 (KJV)

Issac Watts’ beautifully inspirational hymn closes with the thought that: If I had the whole realm of nature in the palm of my hand; if I could truly grasp and appreciate all its intricate and mysterious beauty and majesty and if it were mine to give; it would be far too small a gift to offer in response to the amazing love, divinely revealed, as I stand and “survey the wondrous Cross on which the Prince of Glory died.”

It is here, at the foot of the Cross, that my faith rests; but it is also here that, at times, my greatest doubts loom most large, and threaten to assail me.  The full value of the Cross can be simply too much to take in.  It is at the Cross that I am most acutely aware of my abject baseness, and so it is here that my soul often trembles due to my limited understanding.

Truly, nothing compares to the power of the Cross, and, in spite of all my weaknesses and limitations, I find the light of its eternal truth shining majestically through the darkness of doubt and fear to bring to my troubled soul “the peace of God, which passes all understanding” (Philippians 4:7).

There are moments in our lives when we are overwhelmed by the vastness of the created order.  As King David of Israel observed, man seems an insignificant little speck of dust when set against the great canvas of the universe (Psalm 8:3-4).

As Christians, we can also be overawed by the staggering complexity and all-embracing nature of God’s love for us, as revealed at the Cross.  There are moments when even the most fervent believers tremble with unbelief, through the limitations of the flesh.  But this is all part of the value of the Cross: that it drives us to the point of desolation, so as to reveal to us our true salvation, which is not of the flesh but of the Spirit (Romans 8:1).

Let us not be afraid to come to the Cross and, in spite of our failure to grasp the fullness of its eternal majesty and glory, humbly receive its blessings and rest in its eternal truth.

The Cross is the evidence of God’s abiding love for us; of the truth that he will never leave us or forsake us; of the reality of our inner perfection; of the certainty of resurrection and of lost loves regained; of the receiving of pardon; of the embrace of the Father; of communion with the Son and of the fellowship of the Holy Spirit.

Dear Father in Heaven, help me always to come to the Cross of my Saviour in humility and faith. And to lean wholly on its blessings, in spite of my failure to fully understand and comprehend the true extent of its power, its glory and its majesty.

Study by Richard Dempsey

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One Response to “5th April 2012”

  1. John Magowan on April 5th, 2012 9:29 am

    What an inspiring article on the timely subject of the Cross of Christ! It brought a tear to my eye when I meditated on the enormity of Christ’s sacrifice for us and for the whole world. The hymn writer, Charles Wesley, also put it well when he wrote, “Amazing love! how can it be that Thou my God shouldst die for me!” (hymn, And can it be). Many thanks, Richard, for a wonderful article.

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