One of the most powerful hymns about the cross begins thus:
“when I survey the wondrous cross, on which the prince of glory died……”
It’s an interesting word the songwriter uses – survey.
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines the word ‘survey’ as ‘to look at and examine all the parts of something’ or ‘to view and consider comprehensively.’ It also means to ‘examine as to condition, situation, or value or to appraise.’
My aim today is to encourage you, as this very unique Easter holiday begins, to do a crucifixion survey of your own. Take a walk around the cross.
See the pain, and bruising and bloodletting. Feel the life drain away for you. Remind yourself that as His life ebbed, He held on long enough to ensure that it was enough. Enough for your sin, yes, the deepest, darkest one. Enough for sickness and disease (including COVID-19) and enough to blot out all the curses that ever held you down.
Examine as to value:
Think about it, He died for us when we were enemies, what would He do (or what won’t he do) for us now that we are His friends? Weigh out the love expressed and imagine if anything could be greater (persecutions? Hunger? Want? Earthly sorrow? Death? Riches?)
Examine all the parts:
View the tragedy and glory that went side by side; look at the intense pain Christ endured and the immeasurable glory that kept Him going. Really think about it; whatever you’re going through today, dear pilgrim, will result in a similar weight of glory! Hold on! Never ever give up! Don’t even imagine it friend!
Consider comprehensively and wonder:
Stand in awe and be grateful! We need to be astounded by the cross over and over again so we never become ‘immune’ to its effect! The infinite beauty and completeness and intentionality of the cross must wow us daily and remind us of how blest we are to have such a Saviour! Oh, what a Saviour He is!
Ultimately the surveyor’s work is not complete without a valuation of the item under consideration and thus the hymn fittingly ends:
‘Were the whole realm of nature mine,
That were an offering far too small
Love so amazing, so divine
Demands my soul, my life, my all’
Happy Easter! May the joy of the resurrection be yours now and always!