The question was posted:
“I have been asked by many non-Catholics why do Catholics wear or display the crucifix? Their point is that Jesus is no longer hanging on the cross; He is risen. So why do Catholics display the crucifix on their necklace or on the wall or churches?”
I have heard that question many times as a former Protestant pastor. It always amazed me as the Sacred Scriptures very often speaks about the importance of the Cross.
Saint Paul said, “God forbid that I should glory except in the CROSS.” Galatians 6:14. It was the cross and more specifically Christ’s death and dying on it that was his biggest boast. It wasn’t in his great abilities, although he had many. It wasn’t that he was well schooled in Roman, Greek and Hebrew culture. It was that he was simple sinner that had no boast outside of the death and shed blood of Jesus Christ for all the world.
Also in his epistle to the 1 Corinthians 2:2 he said, “For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him CRUCIFIED.” It was Christ’s atonement and our ONGOING need to submit to that dying of self that was of the greatest importance in his evangelistic work to the church at Corinth. It was his passionate determination to preach that without such, there is no humility,no gospel and no hope!
Even as a former Protestant, I loved the Cross. Sure I know it was the heinous torture instrument of the ancient world and maybe of all time, but it was what the Cross represented that should be precious to us all. We have a God that conquered through humiliation, suffering and death and the message is the same for us today. “Through death, he destroyed him who had the power of death” (Hebrews 2:14).
Eschatologically the Cross will be an eternal reminder of why and how we made it Heaven in the first place. I love the passage in the Revelation when St. John sees “Lamb as if slain STANDING…” (Revelation 5:6). Only he can take and loose the scroll and all of Heaven falls down and worships!!!
I just want to shout Hallelujah and Amen!