Editor's Notes Index
Previous Editor's Notes
"I Will Glory in the Cross"
"But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world." Galatians 6:14
Just as no man can say that Jesus Christ is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost" (I Corinthians 12:3), neither can a man say "I will glory in the cross" except by the same Holy Spirit. (see note 1) To glory in the cross is contrary to the carnal man because it demands that he not only be a partaker of the cross (take it up), but to rejoice in the sufferings of it and in his ultimate death by it. The cross joins us together in His death, just as scripture says of baptism. (see note 2)
Paul however, was speaking specifically of glorying in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, rather than the bearing of our own. The subject of His cross speaks of the Redemption and Salvation of "whosoever believeth", and what greater reason to glory than this. Albert Barnes wrote:
In Jesus the crucified Messiah. It is a subject of rejoicing and glorying that we have such a Saviour. The world looked upon him with contempt; and the cross was a stumbling-block to the Jew, and folly to the Greek. But to the Christian, that cross is the subject of glorying. It is so because:
(1) Of the love of him who suffered there;
(2) Of the purity and holiness of his character, for the innocent died there for the guilty;
(3) Of the honor there put on the Law of God by his dying to maintain it unsullied;
(4) Of the reconciliation there made for sin, accomplishing what could be done by no other oblation, and by no power of man;
(5) Of the pardon there procured for the guilty;
(6) Of the fact that through it we become dead to the world, and are made alive to God;
(7) Of the support and consolation which goes from that cross to sustain us in trial; and,
(8) Of the fact that it procured for us admission into heaven, a title to the world of glory. All is glory around the cross.
It was a glorious Saviour who died; it was glorious love that led him to die; it was a glorious object to redeem a world; and is is unspeakable glory to which he will raise lost and ruined sinners by his death. O who would not glory in such a Saviour!
Compared with this, what trifles are all the objects in which people usually boast! And what a lesson is here furnished to the true Christian!
Let us not boast of our wealth. It will soon leave us, or we shall be taken from it, and it can aid us little in the great matters that are before us. It will not ward off disease; it will not enable us to bear pain; it will not smooth the couch of death; it will not save the soul.
Let us not glory in our strength, for it will soon fail; in our beauty, for we shall soon be undistinguished in the corruptions of the tomb; in our accomplishments, for they will not save us; in our learning, for it is not that by which we can be brought to heaven.
But let us glory that we have for a Saviour the eternal Son of God, that glorious Being who was adored by the inhabitants of heaven; who made the worlds; who is pure, and lovely, and most holy; and who has undertaken our cause and died to save us. I desire no higher honor than to be saved by the Son of God. It is the exaltation of my nature, and shows me more than anything else its true dignity, that one so great and glorious sought my redemption. — Albert Barnes' Notes on the Bible
Matthew Henry wrote:
That his principle glory was in the cross of Christ: God forbid, says he, that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, Galatians 6:14. By the cross of Christ is here meant his sufferings and death on the cross, or the doctrine of salvation by a crucified Redeemer. This was what the Jews stumbled at and the Greeks accounted foolishness; and the judaizing teachers themselves, though they had embraced Christianity, yet were so far ashamed of it that in compliance with the Jews, and to avoid persecution from them, they were for mixing the observance of the law of Moses with faith in Christ, as necessary to salvation.
But Paul had a very different opinion of it; he was so far from being offended at the cross of Christ, or ashamed of it, or afraid to own it, that he gloried in it; yea, he desired to glory in nothing else, and rejected the thought of setting up anything in competition with it, as the object of his esteem, with the utmost abhorrence; God forbid, etc. This was the ground of all his hope as a Christian: this was the doctrine which, as an apostle, he was resolved to preach; and, whatever trials his firm adherence to it might bring upon him, he was ready, not only to submit to them, but to rejoice in them. — Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible
The cross of Jesus Christ is not only our glory, but our testimony to both men and devils, "And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb (His sacrificial death on the cross), and by the word of their testimony; (our witness of the victorious Christ) and they loved not their lives unto the death (why? because they gloried rather in the cross of Jesus)." (Revelation 12:11)
And so it is to the man who has overcome the devil, the flesh and the world. He glories in the cross of Christ alone, counting his own life as nothing in light of this great truth, and stands steadfast as a testimony and a great light, even if it costs him his life.
1.) "But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." (I Corinthians 2:14)
2.) "Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? (Romans 6:3)