Taking up the Cross?

My friend and coworker, Gordon, recently sent me this e-mail:

Have I ever expressed to you how much I can’t stand the little jingle for [local Christian radio station]’s Bible teaching hour at 1pm? It contains the line "So take the time to read [the Bible], cause Jesus took the time to bleed for your sins."
Who EVER thought that that was fine to put in a jingle or really to put in ANYTHING! UGH! Not only is it cheesy as H-E-double hockey sticks, but it totally diminishes what Christ did on the cross. It’s nice of him to take the time out of his busy ministry schedule to bleed for our sins. So weird and awkward!

TheOnion recently posted, "Heckled Christian Rock Band Knows How Jesus Felt":

Bass player Kevin Clark, 26, compared Friday night’s harrowing show to "what Jesus must have braved" at the hands of Pontius Pilate, claiming that while performing he also faced a series of false accusations, including being called the "King of the D–kheads" by one crowd member.

Why do we feel the need to compare our suffering to Christ’s? Perhaps with the underlying goal of defending God’s honor, we try to attribute some sort of transcendant significance to our own suffering. Well, sometimes our pain is not part of some cosmic, Zoroastrian struggle between good and evil. Sometimes pain is discipline from God. Often pain is a result of our sin or someone elses. And sometimes, Sugar-Honey-Iced-Tea happens.

About Benj

I’m a native North Jerseyan, transplanted to Pennsylvania...lived and taught in Eastern Europe for six years…Old Testament professor, ordained minister, occasional liturgist…husband to Corrie…father to Daniel and Elizabeth.
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