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The Cross a Burden or a Glory

The Cross a Burden or a Glory

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Published by GLENN DALE PEASE
BY F. D. HUNTINGTON, D. D.,

AND AS THEY CAME OUT, THEY FOUND A MAN OF CYRENE,
SIMON BY NAME ; HIM THEY COMPELLED TO BEAR HIS CROSS.

Matthew xxvii. 32.

BUT GOD FORBID THAT I SHOULD GLORY, SAVE IN THE CROSS

OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST. Galatians vi. 14.
BY F. D. HUNTINGTON, D. D.,

AND AS THEY CAME OUT, THEY FOUND A MAN OF CYRENE,
SIMON BY NAME ; HIM THEY COMPELLED TO BEAR HIS CROSS.

Matthew xxvii. 32.

BUT GOD FORBID THAT I SHOULD GLORY, SAVE IN THE CROSS

OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST. Galatians vi. 14.

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Mar 24, 2014
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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THE CROSS A BURDEN OR A GLORY BY F. D. HUNTINGTON, D. D.,AND AS THEY CAME OUT, THEY FOUND A MAN OF CYRENE, SIMON BY NAME ; HIM THEY COMPELLED TO BEAR HIS CROSS. Matthew xxvii. 32. BUT GOD FORBID THAT I SHOULD GLORY, SAVE IN THE CROSS OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST. Galatians vi. 14. HERE are two kinds of suffering : two ways of bear ing the cross. "We are struck, first of all, with the con trast between the positions of these two men, the effects they have wrought, the impressions they have made, the memories they have left in the world. One of them is a mere name on the reader s tongue ; the other is a living power in the heart of Christendom. One is a vague, feeble, uninspiring form ; the other is a clear, radiant person, standing erect close to the centre-point of the world s grandest revolution, and moving distinct and strong among the most vivid and hal lowed realities of history. Why this difference ?
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As the executioners, the paid officers of the govern ment, and the willing servants of the priests, after the judicial mockery was over, led the Lord of Life * Good Friday, 1858. THE CROSS A BURDEN OR A GLORY. 339 away to the place of his crucifixion, they found their victim physically unable to bear the weight of the wood whereon he was to be nailed and to die. It was not unusual, in such cases, to require some substitute to take up and carry that burden. Simon the Cyrenian happened to be by the way, a convenient drudge for the cruel purposes of the men : a stranger, a mere looker-on at the spectacle, not worse, not better, so far as we know, than the crowd that usually follows a pass ing procession, or gazes at a public punishment. It does not appear that any sympathy had been kindled between him and the sufferer ; that he had any glimpse of the meaning of the Messiah or of his message ; that one touch of spiritual illumination from that " Light of the World " had reached him, nor that one thought of the glory of the august sacrifice that was preparing
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made the cross feel lighter to him. It must have been heavy, and it must have seemed hard, as many crosses seem. As far as appears, he was the reluctant, stolid instrument of an arbitrary command, compelled to a menial service by an insolent and overbearing po lice. So Simon bore the cross of Christ. Some years after, but, remember, long before the cross had come to be the badge of honor and of beauty it is now, or anything but a mark of criminal disgrace, as the gallows, the penitentiary, and the pillory are to us, while the Crucified was yet a name of general reproach, ridiculed in courts, despised by the religious and respectable, scarcely known to learning and fash ion, to the Jews a stumbling-block, and to the Greeks foolishness, Paul, convert and apostle, was writing to a little company of believers he had gathered at Galatia in that outcast name. He, too, had seen Christ, but 29 340 THE CROSS A BURDEN OR A GLORY. not in the body ; had come after him in another sense ;
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