The Manger In The Shadow of the Cross


YOUR OWN SOUL”. Luke 2:35 (NKJV)

Joseph, Mary, Simeon and Baby Jesus in the temple

in the shadow of the cross

    “Yes, a sword will pierce through your own soul”, were strange words for the sage Simeon to address to Mary, as she and Joseph, the happy couple who had brought their infant Son to the temple. As Simeon held the “Salvation of the Lord” to his bosom, he could see, as it were, the grim arms of the rugged cross casting its gloomy shadow across the tiny form which He was holding. 

     Calvary, the cross, the crucifixion, the mother of Jesus weeping at His feet — all seem to sweep like a swiftly moving picture before the dimming eyes of Simeon. Mary must understand the scriptures on her own, so he speaks in shadows, “yes, a sword will pierce through your own soul”, Mary. Simeon could say as few others in his day could, that he has seen the Lord’s salvation — because he had see the manger in the shadow of the cross. 

     Mary has already had a hectic life, in that she, while pregnant, and Joseph, had to make a hazardous trip from Nazareth to Bethlehem to pay taxes. It will not be long until the three of them will be racing against time to Egypt to escape Herod’s wrath by the sword fearing for his throne. Now she will be holding the words of Simeon in her heart for most of 33 years. 

     The world during the past weeks has stood at the manger.  But did it see the cross? The shadow of the cross against the Baby Jesus and Mary gives the picture meaning. The Christ of Bethlehem would be of little value were it not for the Christ of Golgotha and the Christ of Calvary. 

     For us the Lamb of God that takes away the sins of the world was born. The cross, the altar, awaits the precious sacrifice — the Lamb which was born to bear the sins of a fallen world. Let us rejoice again and again in its true significance — that Calvary has given meaning to our Christmas. That is why we sing: 

                              In the Cross of Christ I glory, Tow’ring o’er the wrecks of  time

                             All the light of sacred story Gathers round its head sublime.

                             Bane and blessing, pain and pleasure, By the cross are sanctified;

                             Peace is there that knows no measure, Joys that through all time abide.

                                                          >author: John Bowring – 1792 – 1872< 

May it be given to everyone to see the infant Savior in the shadow of the cross. Amen


    Just a Thought Across The Garden Gate by Parson Don. 




Updated Jan 4, 2012
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