Holy Cross Day
Now when the centurion, who stood facing him, saw that in this way he breathed his last, he said, “Truly this man was God’s Son!”
September 14 is Holy Cross Day. The day originally celebrated the discovery of cross on which Jesus was crucified.
Saint Helena, the mother of the Roman emperor, Constantine, believed she had found the cross. The Church of the Holy Sepulchre was built on the site. The Church was opened on September 13, 335 but the Cross was made available for ‘veneration’ (to honor with a visible act) on September 14. Thus, the observation of Holy Cross on that day.
(Source: William Weedon. Celebrating the Saints Concordia Publishing House. Kindle Edition.)
For many people, myself included, it is not important whether Helena found the cross on which Jesus was crucified. Nor does it matter if she found the spot where Jesus was crucified. What does matter is that Jesus was crucified.
Jesus’ crucifixion was a victorious event. It was on the cross that God saved the world from sin. Isaiah 1: 18 states,
“Come now, let us argue it out, says the LORD: though your sins are like
scarlet, they shall be like snow; though they are red like crimson, they
shall become like wool.”
Through the cross, our sins have been changed from red to white, from crimson to wool.
We have been made pure through the cross of Christ.
But the cross is important for another reason. It is the way we see the world.
On the cross, the world saw weakness and failure. However, God was working his greatest strength and success.
Speaking of the cross, Paul writes in 1 Corinthians, “For God’s foolishness is wiser than human wisdom, and God’s weakness is stronger than human strength.” (1 Corinthians 1:18)
The cross frees us to see God even in the things that look weak and look as failure.
Peace Lutheran Church
Mill Valley, California