Hour of the Cross
Where the beams of the tree did cross
Is the place where he did appear bathos.
Did he not promise to be the delivering King,
On whom all our mortal hopes did cling?
[bathos noun; anticlimax, disappointment, sentimentality, letdown, comedown (informal),]
During that first “Good Friday” the Apostles and disciples, and all Christ followers, were confused and thunderstruck with grief.
Jesus’ inner circle had been warned by Him this had to be, but they didn’t fully comprehend just what precisely was His meaning. More understanding would come later. Their case is the same with every new generation following. “Why did He have to die?” they ask. That is because it is Friday, the hour of the cross. But Sunday is coming. The supreme answer.
The world is declared unsalvageable by God at the hour of the cross.
He will save from destruction those He came to save from the wrath and judgment to come. Here He will destroy every vestige of the spoiled estate and renew everything, cleansing sin from existence.
“Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.”
The results of the hour are put very succinctly by Jesus in John 12:31. What an hour this is. Can you see that it is the most momentous hour of all time? We talk about history’s pivotal points, but they are all nothing when you look at this. “Now is the judgment of this world”—the whole world. In the sense that it is the hour in which the world was really revealed for what it is. It was there that sin was revealed. There, shown plainly and clearly once and forever, is the whole state of mankind apart from God.
The cross reveals sin for what it is and pronounces doom on the whole world and everything that belongs to that realm.
The cross of Jesus Christ makes this great proclamation.
Unless I believe in Him, unless I believe that His death at that hour is the only thing that reconciles me to God, I remain under the wrath of God.
If I do not see and embrace that the wrath of God against my sin has been borne there by the Son of God, then the alternative is that I must experience the wrath of God.
That is the essence of the gospel of Christ. I believe that my sins have been punished in the body of the Son of God, or else they will be punished in me. It is the judgment of the world.
The world apart from Him is under the wrath of God. It is doomed, it is condemned, and He alone can save it in that way. There was no other way, for God would never have allowed His Son to endure all that if there had been another way. It is the only way. Therefore it is the judgment of the world.
“For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. 19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil.” (John 3:17-19 NIV)
The video below is powerful in it’s visual of the spiritual meaning of the cross. The bonus is Johnny Cash.