“Let us delight in the knowledge of Christ crucified, and be often in the thoughts and study of Him. Study Christ, not only as living, but dying; not as breathing in our air, but suffering in our stead; know Him as a victim, which is the way to know Him as a conqueror.
Christ as crucified is the great object of faith. All the passages of His life, from His nativity to His death, are passed over in the Creed without reciting, because, though they are things to be believed, yet the belief of them is not sufficient without the belief of the cross: in that alone was our redemption wrought.
Had He only lived, He had not been a Saviour. If our faith stop in His life, and do not fasten upon His blood, it will not be a justifying faith.
His miracles, which prepared the world for His doctrine, His holiness, which fitted Himself for His suffering, had been insufficient for as without the addition of the cross.
Without the cross, we had been under the demerit of our crimes, the venom of our natures, the slavery of our sins, and the tyranny of the devil; without the cross, we should forever have had God for our enemy, and Satan for our executioner; without the cross, we had lain groaning under the punishment of our transgressions, and despaired of any smile from heaven.
It was this death which as a sacrifice appeased God, and as a price redeemed us. Nothing is so strong to encourage us, nothing so powerful to purify us. How can we be without thinking of it!
The world we live in had fallen upon our heads, had it not been upheld by the pillar of the cross, had not Christ stepped in and promised a satisfaction for the sin of man.
By this all things consist. Not a blessing we enjoy but may put us in mind of it. They were all forfeited by our sins, but merited by his precious blood.
If we study it well, we shall be sensible how God hated sin and loved a world; how much he would part with to restore a fallen creature. He showed an irresistible love to us.”