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The Cross He Bore Paperback – December 1, 1996
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About the Author
Leahy is Principal of the Reformed Theological College, Belfast.
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Top Customer Reviews
Truthfully, I do not remember where I first heard of this book. I was surprised one day to see it turn up in the mail and I soon realized that at one point I had added it to my Amazon wishlist. I knew nothing about it other than what the cover told me: "Meditations on the sufferings of the Redeemer." Edward Donnelly writes in the foreward that this book has three virtues: it provides solid instruction; gives full play to a disciplined and sanctified imagination; and it recalls the neglected art of meditation. He says further that "in rereading these chapters, I found myself more than once compelled by emotion to stop - and then to worship. I cannot help feeling that this is exactly how they were written and that the author's chief desire is that each of us who reads should be brought to gaze in fresh understanding and gratitude upon 'the Son of God,' who loved me and give himself for me." As with Donnelly, I was often compelled to stop and worship, to stop and meditate, or to stop and dry my eyes, thanking Christ for His immeasurable sacrifice.
The book is comprised of thirteen chapters, each of which is a short meditation or reflection on a different aspect of Christ's sacrifice, from the close of the Last Supper to the blotting of the sun from the sky while He hung on the cross. It truly strikes to the very heart of the Gospel.
But I hesitate to say more. Perhaps part of the beauty and significance of this book, was that it came unannounced. There was no lofty position for it to attain to. And perhaps it is best that way. And so I will leave it with merely my wholehearted recommendation and the knowledge that I will return to it often. This short book is an invaluable treasure and I am certain that the reflections it contains will stay with me and come to heart and mind whenever I meditate upon the cross of Christ.
The Scripture is solidly used. The words are true and not extraneous nor forced academics or sentimentality. And not to be sentimental myself -- it's like being there and I would have been one of the mob.
A couple of good gems I wrote down:
"Now He gives to His people 'the cup of salvation'...one cup was emptied (cup of wrath towards believers) that the other might be filled overflowing. The first cup guaranteed the second."
"The real truth is that while He came to preach the Gospel, His chief object in coming was that there might be a Gospel to preach."
"There is an error to avoid, the danger of seeing the loving obedience of Christ as primarily and exclusively for the sake of man, when in fact, it was primarily out of love for God that He accepted the cross."
This is worth the time to read.
Basically what Leahy does in this book is walk the reader through Christ's last hours on earth, His Passion. Dealing in 13 chapters with different aspects and scenes from those hours, the divinity of Christ and His humanness are both kept sharply in focus. The sin of mankind both for which Christ was dying and the sins of those who directly took part in His murder are not deminished, but neither is the fact that "It was the will of the Lord to crush him" that it was the Lord who "has put him to grief" (Isaiah 53:10).
I recommend that you read this book in a quiet place with little destraction with your Bible by your side. Read it one chapter at a time and then sit and re-read, and pray. Let the Spirit take you back to the foot of the cross where you gaze up at your only hope, the King of the universe hanging in misery, damnation, and ultimately victory. Look at the cross he bore and realize that with such a high price to secure our salvation, anything that we hope to add or to repay will only be an insult to His gift, diminishing its value and His glory. Let the Spirit take you to the foot of the cross where you realize who we are, we are all beggars.
The individual chapters are short and allow the reader to read each chapter as time permits. I keep this book in my car to read while waiting for appointments (I'm usually early). As I meditate on the sufferings Christ endured it inspires me
to go through life's challenges, difficulties, hardships, etc. with grace, knowing that Christ paid the ultimate price and he did it with great majesty.