by Marv Walker
Madison, Ga., church
As I look at the crosses on our communionware I’m struck by their beauty. They are smooth and polished. The metal on ours is intended to look like silver but in some cases they are intended to look like gold. Some have little decorations. Ours have little bud-like globes. If I remember correctly it is a fleur de lis design, what we would call a three-leaf clover, supposedly representing God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Beautiful.
There are numerous styles of crosses. Some have rounded bulb points at the pole ends. Some have circles, some have intricate designs. The cross has become such an art icon that we often wear one as jewelry. Some of you may be wearing one now. If we were to examine each of them we would find them very fetching. Our jewelry has to be beautiful.
I have seen figures on some of the crosses. And the figures seem to always follow a pattern. A handsome man hangs pristinely on the cross. He always has a gracefully draped loincloth, his skin is smooth and clean. His face is serene, his hair is flowing. Since the crosses of the world are so beautiful the figure on them has to be as well.
The world wants a beautiful unblemished cross.
The cross of the Bible was crude. No flat smooth surface to lessen the pressure against lash torn and tortured skin. His hair was matted. Blood was everywhere, some of it caked, clotted, mixed with dirt. Those put on the cross writhed in agony as they sought some relief from the pain. There was nothing pretty about the cross of the Bible. It was as gory, gruesome, degrading and ugly as sinful man could possibly make it.
The glory of the cross is not the cross. The glory of the cross is the innocent, sinless Man sacrificed for our sins. He willingly and lovingly stepped up to the cross and paid the sin price for every believer.
These emblems represent the true beauty of the cross.
The beauty of the cross is seen in the emblems, not the communionware.