The Missing Cross in Mormonism

31 March

Passion of the Christ and Mormons

Mormons stay away from Passion because of ‘R’ rating

In what is just another example of how Mormons are under the law, Mormons stayed away from theaters for the Passion of the Christ so they would not be seen at an R-rated movie.  In spite of what Mormons think, in reality, Mel Gibson probably did not go far enough in his depiction of Christ’s suffering.  One has to wonder if the story was about Joseph Smith’s death, would the church care as much about these arbitrary ratings? Does the church care about appearances to a worldly rating system more than sharing in the suffering of their “Lord”? In a word, yes!

The Missing Cross in Mormonism

1 Corinthians 1:18-19; “For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.  For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.”

You’ve heard it said that a way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.  While that may tie you or me over for a bit of time, eventually we’re going to be looking in the not too distant future to be satisfied again.  If we base our worthiness on what we can cook, how much money we make, what clothing we wear; we will be nothing but a sorry bunch.  Yet isn’t that what we do when we try to control our every step in our every day; or when our focus isn’t where it should be?  There is a way to the heart of man that will always satisfy, it is the cross.

I remember sitting on a stairway out in the countryside in Germany several years ago.  The stairway would lead you down to a path that circled a small lake in the village where my husband and I were living.  I would walk about half way down those stairs and turn around to stare at the cross at the top of the hill.  The area was quiet more times than not, surrounded by lush green trees and bushes.  I would sit there for hours wondering what that white cross meant.  I obviously knew that it represented where Jesus had been crucified, but I wanted to know more.  Why was it so important, why did the Christian churches place them around their churches, yet in the “Christian church” I attended, there was no cross to be found?

Besides wanting to know more about the cross, I wanted to know more about the Jesus that everyone else in the world knew about.  He seemed much different to the one I was accustomed to throughout my twenty or so years.  He seemed as elusive as that cross did.  And it hadn’t mattered where I had traveled in Europe, there were crosses on the churches in every single country we visited and every person I met in those countries had the same story about Jesus when I’d ask questions.

Never in Utah was there as many crosses as what I had seen in Germany; the crosses were almost as common as ward buildings with their aesthetic steeples.  In Utah you could see a cross if you drove by the Methodist or Catholic Church, or if you’d drive a little further north of my hometown there was a big cross that stood on the property outside the Calvary Chapel at the mouth of the canyon.  That was it; I don’t remember seeing any other crosses in the town I grew up in.

I had to work hard at looking for them and wanted more than anything to know more about it because it was a core doctrine in the LDS Church to not bother with them.  I would often wonder what was it that I wasn’t supposed to know.  Why was it presented as something that needed to be talked about in hushed tones?

In the book Mormon Doctrine this is what it says about the cross on page 172; “In succeeding centuries, the churches which came into being through an intermingling of pagan concepts with the true apostolic Christianity developed the practice of using symbolic crosses in the architecture of their buildings and as jewelry attached to the robes of their priests. Frequently this practice of dwelling on the personal death struggle of our Lord has caused these churches to put sculptured representations of Christ on their crosses, thus forming so called crucifixes. All this is inharmonious with the quiet spirit of worship and reverence that should attend a true Christian’s remembrance of our Lord’s sufferings and death. In fact, the revealed symbolism to bring these things to the attention of true worshipers is found in the ordinance of the sacrament.”

If you were to ask a Mormon why they don’t wear a cross necklace or have crosses anywhere at their church wards they will tell you that “the cross was a murder weapon. If Jesus had been shot by a gun would you wear a gun around your neck?”

I’ve been home several times since I moved away and have seen that there are indeed many more crosses that dot the skyline of my hometown and I praise Jesus for that!  He has certainly heard and answered the prayers of countless Christians everywhere for placing His church inside Utah!  May we continue to pray that He would make it possible to have more?

I know and understand it probably sounds as if I am worshipping the cross and bowing to it.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  As a member of the true church – the body of Christ – I am most humbled by the solitary work that Jesus performed on my behalf.  I want to bring attention to the cross because of the significance of the work performed there by our Lord.

What an incredible feat He endured!  Of course nothing could ever compare to the miraculous way God sought to redeem His people and then to even save the Gentiles as well!  What else can be said except that we have such a merciful, loving God whose mighty arm extends to save?

Each time I am at a worship service singing about the blood of Jesus I thank Him for getting me out of Mormonism.  It’s been 18 years now and I still can’t believe it.   I am also reminded of the songs I used to sing as a Mormon and my heart is just sick thinking about the loneliness and fruitless ways of the LDS doctrine. “Praise to the man”, meaning Joseph Smith, is just one example.

At a conference in Seattle, the pastor Alistair Begg said, “When you take your eyes off the cross, you lose your way in the Bible”.  The Mormon Church is proof of that!  They carry the Bible around with them, yet they believe that it’s not translated correctly and where is the cross in the lives of the Mormon people?

The LDS Church is certainly consistent about one thing throughout their writings and teachings.  They work hard at keeping people confused and they deserve an “A” for effort.  In Doctrines of Salvation, pg. 130 it says this about the cross:

We speak of the passion of Jesus Christ. A great many people have an idea that when he was on the cross, and nails were driven into his hands and feet, that was his great suffering. His great suffering was before he ever was placed upon the cross. It was in the Garden of Gethsemane that the blood oozed from the pores of his body: “Which suffering caused myself, even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit-and would that I might not drink the bitter cup, and shrink,”.”

Now keep this in mind as we read further into this teaching by their prophet Joseph Fielding Smith on page 132;

We will never be able to pay the debt. The gratitude of our hearts should be filled to overflowing in love and obedience for his great and tender mercy. For what he has done, we should never fail him. He bought us with a price, the price of his great suffering and the spilling of his blood in sacrifice on the cross.

So where did the atonement for sins take place?  When there are so many other distractions and side items going on in your theology, it is easy enough to forget the essentials and the Mormon scripture above serves as a good example of what can and does happen.  I know it’s not politically correct and it’s very offensive in today’s day and age to speak of a gruesome event such as crucifixion.

People today want things to be neatly packaged and non-confrontational.  Many of the e-mails that come through our website tell us that we should unite with all the religions to build each other up.  Or they will tell us that the message of the gospel is great, but just don’t hound on the cross so much because it sounds as if I’m bowing down to worship it.

When I think of the cross I can think of nothing else but the God I worship and that I am in complete awe because He hung there for me.   The missionary Amy Carmichael once said; “If I covet anything but the dust at the foot of the cross, I know nothing of Calvary Love”.  It is a breath of fresh air to hear the messages preached and books written about the crucifixion.  Our sin isn’t pretty, and neither should the circumstances be of the need to take care of our sin.

The entire Bible is about one person; that being Jesus, the One Who saves.  The Old Testament prophets wrote about Him, prophesied about Him and looked to God to provide.  The gospels are relatively short in their description of His life compared to the rest of the New Testament.  The rest of the New Testament is focused solely on what happens to man because of the crucifixion and resurrection.  Even till today, the crucifixion is what marks our time here on earth.  It’s been about 1,970 years since His death.  Who else receives such attention about their death?  As Alistair Begg pointed out “everyone receives attention for the lives they lived, but it is impossible to find extensive information about anyone concerning their death”.

Here are some of the Old Testament prophecies about Jesus’ crucifixion:

Deut. 21:22-3

Ps. 16:10; 22:15-18; 34:20; 68:18; 69:21; 109:2-4

Dan. 9:24-6

Zech.12:10

and let us not forget our beloved gift of Isaiah’s words in Isaiah 53.

In the last reference, Isaiah 53, there are 48 prophecies about Jesus.  In the Old Testament there are 333 prophecies about Him and 33 of those were fulfilled in the last 24 hours of His life!  Can you imagine my friend, all of the Bible points to just one person and two events in the history of time?  The two events are of course, the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ Jesus.   Last summer Kirk and I went to Nauvoo for missions and while we were there the Lord showed me something I’ll never forget.

He brought to mind what Paul spoke about in the fifteenth chapter of 1st Corinthians – you got it – the “resurrection chapter”!   I stood at the grave of Joseph Smith feeling poorly for the Mormon people that their praise goes to someone who created a false faith and who is still lying under the ground.  The other part of me was filled with relief that God got me out of the mess I was in every day and my hope was in a God who had not only provided for me, but also gave me the assurance that I will be with Him in heaven.

One of the verses found in scripture that we can keep near our hearts for assurance is John 19:30.  I use this scripture a lot with the Mormons and always ask them the same thing with it.  What did Jesus mean when He said “It is finished” in John 19:30?

They all give me the same answer which speaks volumes, but it mostly tells me they have been taught to answer any questions in the same way when asked by their non-Mormon friends or relatives.  This is what I hear each time and it’s taken from Journal of Discourses 23:174-5;

It is believed by many in the Christian world, that our Savior finished his mission when he expired upon the cross, and his last words on the cross, as given by the Apostle John—”it is finished,” are frequently quoted as evidence of the fact; but this is an error. Christ did not complete his mission upon the earth until after his body was raised from the dead.

The rest of the quote goes on to say that His mission wasn’t done because He had not risen.  It then goes on to say that the apostles couldn’t remember anything the Savior had told them about the Holy Ghost and being filled with power by him.  Now while part of that may be a little bit true, the part about Jesus’ mission not being complete is not true.

The apostles didn’t understand what Jesus had meant while He spoke to them in person.  However, during His appearances after His resurrection He gave them specific orders to wait in Jerusalem for the gift that He had promised to them.

The apostle’s job was about to take place, fifty days after the resurrection would be Pentecost and they would be infilled with the Holy Spirit and the birth of the Jesus’ Church would begin.

Jesus’ work and sacrifice was indeed finished – Jesus was born for one purpose and that purpose was to die as the sacrificial Lamb of God for you, for me, for all who would believe on His name.  It was because His work was finished that we are found to be righteous before God the Father; not because of anything you or I could ever do!

If you are looking anywhere but the cross for your salvation, your search is in vain.  God ordained this before the world was because He already knew that man would sin and need help to be found worthy.  The fall of Adam and Eve was a curse, not a necessary evil of a fall upward as the LDS doctrines would lead people to believe.  Here are a few LDS doctrinal examples of what they believe about the fall:

 Articles of Faith 2 – “We believe that men will be punished for their own sins, and not for Adam’s transgression.

     2 Nephi 2:25 says; “Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy.

     D&C 29:39; “And it must needs be that the devil should tempt the children of men, or they could not be agents unto themselves; for if they never should have bitter they could not know the sweet –.”

     Articles of Faith, pg. 63; “It has become a common practise with mankind to heap reproaches upon the progenitors of the family, and to picture the supposedly blessed state in which we would be living but for the fall; whereas our first parents are entitled to our deepest gratitude… But for the opportunity thus given, the spirits of God’s offspring would have remained forever in a state of innocent childhood, sinless through no effort of their own; negatively saved, not from sin, but from the opportunity of meeting sin; incapable of winning the honors of victory because prevented from taking part in the conflict…From Father Adam we have inherited all the ills to which flesh is heir; but such are necessarily incident to a knowledge of good and evil, by the proper use of which knowledge man may become even as the Gods.”

 So the bottom line with the LDS Church is that the cross means absolutely nothing because they believe Jesus paid for our sins in the Garden of Gethsemane; they believe that it was a “necessary evil” that Adam fell so we could earn the honors of victory in the conflict of sin and we owe our gratitude to our father Adam for his great disobedience towards God.

I pray that God would have mercy upon this people and lead as many as would listen to His truth so they may be saved.  Acts 3:19 says; “Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.

If you’re a Mormon please know that we’re not here to bash you or insult you!  We care deeply about your salvation and want you to know how much Jesus really does love you.  The Jesus of the Bible is the true Son of God, not the one that Joseph Smith made up in 1830.  If you’d like more information about this topic or anything else in Mormonism don’t hesitate to drop us a line!

With Love in Christ;

Michelle Grim

1 Cor. 1:18

20 Responses to “The Missing Cross in Mormonism”

  1. George Joseph deMetz March 29, 2012 at 7:48 am #

    What a very shallow site! I’m confident that my comments as a Mormon will be censored, but, anyway, I’ll try to post them. First of all, John’s writings in the Book of Revelation were to the saints, who had been really “born again”; born of the water, in baptism, and born of the Spirit, by receiving the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost! This gift, which is obviously lacking from this site, would enable them to understand what he was writing! This gift would enable you to see that the beast which came up from the land with two horns like a lamb (Christlike-the two horns representing the Greek and Roman branches of the ecclesiastical empire that would exercise all the power of Rome after it (which would speak as a dragon-Satan-deceitfully) represented the Catholic church which would have power over the saints for the 1260 years (see Clark’s Commentary-non-Mprmon) in which the true church would be driven in the wilderness (see Revelation 12:6), from 570 AD-1830 AD! This mark of the beast, or sign of the kingdom is the cross, and if you had this gift and used it, then you would realize that the passage which states “in the right had and forehead” should have been copied as “with the right hand and forehead.” You would also realize that the 666 represents the DCLXVI which was on the mitres of the bishops of Rome! However, since you obviously don’t, I’ll just expect you to go right on with your ignorant blasphemies!!!

    • Mike Boyle September 8, 2016 at 4:22 am #

      I’ve talked to Mormons before. And yea I agree with the other person; this site is incredibly shallow. The reason they don’t celebrate the Cross is because they see it as a murder weapon. It’s what he did on the Cross and thats good enough for them to remember!

  2. christy October 20, 2012 at 8:01 pm #

    George, I don’t see where you are getting your interpretation from –
    KJV Revelation 12:6 And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days. where do you get the 570 AD-1830 AD- that is not close to the time frame at all…
    She shares what she does out of love… don’t be angry- prove her wrong if you feel so strongly

    • George DeMetz April 4, 2015 at 5:56 pm #

      I already stated that Clark’s commentary (non-Mormon) states that the 1260 days are prophetic days, or, in other words 1260 years. The Lombard invasion in 570 AD apparently wiped out any remnant of the true church’s public ministry. The true church was restored again in 1830 AD with the same organization, ordinances, and authority as Peter prophesied as recorded in Acts 3:19.

  3. camdenc October 24, 2012 at 5:08 pm #

    Christy – great reply…

  4. Steve October 26, 2012 at 10:51 pm #

    I agree with Christy George. You are so wrong about Rev:12-6. You are a learned man George. It seems you speak with knowledge you have only heard. You should get a real Bible ( a Thompson Chain Reference) and study and shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

    I do believe that is II Timothy:2-15. Read it yourself

    Steve

  5. Anders November 8, 2013 at 11:06 pm #

    Why don’t we be Christian about this? Mormons are doing their best to follow Jesus just as we are, they simply believe different things about his mission and purpose. This article shallowly assumes that they avoid the cross because they don’t appreciate Christ’s Atonement. I have many Mormon friends and I have been to their church, and this article drastically misrepresents their views. Mormons prefer to focus on the Living Christ instead of the symbol of his death, but that’s not to say that His Atonement is not a central tenant to their religion.

    This article is not accurate.

    • Hunter May 7, 2017 at 7:50 am #

      I really appreciated your comment! I imagine you are not a member of the LDS church but that doesn’t matter, I have respect for whatever religion you believe in. As a member of the LDS church, It brought me a lot of joy to hear someone of a different faith do something rather than bash my religion. Sometimes it seems like all the other religions have absolutely nothing nice to say about the LDS faith, i know this isn’t true, and it’s probably just because the outspoken people are the loudest and the ones you hear the most. If you have faith in Christ and do your best while here on earth, I truly believe God will reward you regardless of what religion you are. Our test on Earth isn’t the test of who guessed the correct religion, it’s about our faith and our good works. I know that this comment was made almost five years from now and that you probably won’t even see this, but Thank you for your comments! I hope you will continue to act in faith and I know God will reward you!

  6. LifeAfter November 25, 2013 at 7:10 pm #

    Anders –

    This isn’t about who works harder at following Jesus! This is about which Jesus they’re following. The Jesus of Mormonism is far different than the Jesus of Christianity – even Hinckley stated as much in 1998. http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/31188/Crown-of-gospel-is-upon-our-heads.html
    The vocabulary you’re choosing to use leads me to believe that you’re LDS – therefore I’m letting you know that the atonement of the Mormon Jesus isn’t anything remotely close to what the Bible says.
    The Mormon Jesus paid for some of man’s sins in the Garden of Gethsemane. They get this from a misinterpretation of Luke 22:44.
    The Jesus of Christianity and the Bible didn’t pay for sins in the Garden of Gethsemane. He paid for them on the cross, thus the topic of the article.
    So i ask you Anders, what is it that we’ve misrepresented?
    Know that we’re praying for you!
    With Love in Christ;
    Michelle
    1 Cor. 1:18

  7. Charles February 9, 2014 at 4:12 pm #

    I only wish to make one comment regarding why Mormon’s didn’t watch in droves The Passion of the Christ. They don’t believe watching violent images is good period regardless of who or why. They would be advised not to watch a movie about Joe Smith if it showed the same degree of violence the passion had. Your bias as well as many other Christian writers was a big reason it took me 20 years to be saved from Mormonism and to be saved.

  8. EG May 9, 2014 at 7:50 am #

    Mormons did watch The Passion of the Christ. I was one of them. The LDS church did not tell any member not to watch The Passion.

    I have non member friends who were told to not view The Passion by their Preachers because the movie was made by a Catholic, Mel Gibson! So quite saying lies about Mormons.

    • LifeAfter May 10, 2014 at 6:23 pm #

      EG – It’s not a lie. Mormon are counseled from a young age to avoid rated R movies, or any movie/book/magazine/TV show with violent, pornographic, excessive cursing or suggestive themes. So it’s not too far out of the realm of possibility for their church leaders to prefer they didn’t watch The Passion of the Christ given it’s continent. – Melissa Grimes

  9. Sue September 1, 2014 at 12:35 pm #

    I’m a Christian women and I’ve fallen in love with a Mormon man. This man came with me to my church and bible study’s for along time and then stopped. He pursued me and helped me as a single women doing painting and landscaping around my house, many things. Although there was an attraction on both parts I held him at arms length stating “we could be nothing but friends.”
    He had two knee replacements and the cancer, that almost killed him. I prayed for him & helped him many times & became attached to and yes I did finally after 3 years fall in love with him.
    This man wants to marry me only if I turn Mormon & marry him in the temple . This can never happen because I’m a Christian & I feel like I’ve been alluded.
    I’m now a 59 yr old woman that has waisted my time and needs to move on and I don’t exactly know how to breakup with him or does he know how to break up with me, because our love is so sweet but my heart is so broken. I’ve been divorced for 25yrs & want to be married. How can I move past this? I truly need to brake up and move on. It’s been 6 years of this relationship and the older I get the harder it is.
    Please help… He’s a good man and a convert to the Mormon religion but I could never believe in LDS. We can never be unified as one in God. I pray others learn from my mistake. I need to move on with my life. I feel so broken.

    • Marilyn March 19, 2015 at 7:20 am #

      Dear Sue,
      I am so sry for your heartbreak. Have you gotten a reply for your question? Don’t ever give up your faith in the true God of the Bible or in the true Jesus of the Bible. My daughter dated a Mormon during a difficult time in her life, but, thank God, realized that she could never marry a man who was not a Biblically Born Again Christian. Mormonism is very confusing. They use Christian terms, but are not Bible believers or followers. I was considering joining the Mormon church during my college years. I studied a lot and asked a bunch of questions. Then I began to discover the iceberg below the water line–the stuff the Mormon church keeps silent about until a person is spiritually ensnared with them. Don’t be deceived. Be obedient to God, Sue <3

    • Hunter May 7, 2017 at 8:00 am #

      I know this comment was made a while ago but I’m curious how things have gone since then? Have you at least attempted going to the LDS church? If not I’d encourage you to at least give it a try, if it’s not for you, if you don’t believe anything they have to say, that’s fine. Something that you should understand is that mormons are christians. We do believe in Christ. We do believe in his Atonement. We do believe in the Bible. We do believe he died for our sins. Jesus Christ is very very real to us. Another thing that’s important to know is that the reason why getting married in the temple is so important to us is because we believe that’s where we are sealed together with our spouse for all eternity. If you have already tried this I’m very sorry and I’m sorry i haven’t been useful. However I do wish you the greatest of luck, I hope that the greatest of luck has already happened to you.

  10. Hunter May 7, 2017 at 8:06 am #

    Mormons believe in Christ’s Atonement. We do believe that he died for our sins and that he suffered in Gethsemane for us. I know this was not intentional and that you probably really did not intend to insult mormons, but you can’t say we are not here to bash you, then bash our religion. That insults us, like How it may insult you when Atheist people say there is no God and that being Christian is stupid. All we can do in this life is have faith, repent of our sins and act upon our faith

    • Louie August 6, 2017 at 2:40 am #

      It’s problematic Hunter as it all starts from a very ill man whose lust for women led him into marrying over 40 wives, spanning over 17 years, establishing the practice of polygamy, adultery, bigamy, and even being a pedophile. One of the saddest of all consequences is the church of Joseph Smith, leading millions into an abyss of myths and confused thinking…including the understanding of the Cross. It is an utter ignoring of the sacrifices at the temple that makes LDS insights incorrect. The sacrifices are not accepted solely by their virtue; but, when they were sacrificed. It is the atoning blood that was spilled at the temple, and on the cross, that makes this consistent. There’s more, like the not breaking of His legs, or the separation from blood and water, but especially the elimination for the need of temples now that the work on the cross was finished! The Holy Spirit does not hover in any one location, but is omnipresent and omniscient in it’s ability to indwell those that are one with Christ; as well as, being able to hear all of the prayers of the saints. All this an more, all because of the work on the cross! No…Christians take pride in the cross; and, we don’t walk around cowering in fear of following Christ. Whether it’s bearing the cross, or even something as simple as making sure we’re actually partaking in the communion (and not with water! 🙂

  11. Hunter August 7, 2017 at 7:40 am #

    I believe Joseph Smith restored the church to the Earth, I believe he was a prophet of God, I admire him, but in no way do I or the correct members of the church worship Joseph Smith. I worship my loving and merciful Heavenly Father, and my savior Jesus Christ who died and suffered for my sins and everyone else’s. whatever religion you are I admire that you attend and encourage you to continue building faith. Like I said all we can do is build our faith in our Savior and our Father in Heaven and do our absolute best in this life. The LDS church helps me build this faith. Im happy if some other church helps you build your faith as well. I encourage you to rather than seek to find controversies in other churches that are a part of probably every church at some point or another, to instead build your faith, repent, and live righteously as I know from personal experience, that is where true happiness comes from. Sin may grant you short term satisfaction but true happiness comes from living the gospel. I hope that you are living righteously and if not I hope you start to do so, if you are I hope you continue to do so. One final thought, God loves all his children regardless of their mistakes.

  12. Bon September 11, 2017 at 11:44 pm #

    I have one question to each in this debate that seems to go unanswered between Mainstream Christian vs Mormon atonement interpretations. To the Christians: What do you believe Christ was doing in the Garden of Gethsemane and did that have any significance to the Atonement? If so, what was it? To the Mormons: Do you believe there was any symbolism or necessity to Christ dying on the cross or could he have died in any other method and had it still be equally significant?

    • Jamie September 28, 2017 at 8:00 pm #

      Bon,
      Matthew 26:36-46 explains what Jesus was doing in the Garden of Gethsemane. Jesus, knowing what was about to take place, was very troubled “My soul is very sorrowful, even death;” Matthew 26:38 and he took two of his most trusted disciples with him to pray. He prayed 3 times for God to “take this cup” from Him meaning if there is any other way, in accordance with God’s will, to save the souls of man, for God to act on it. His disciples kept falling asleep because it was the middle of the night/early morning, just proving how frail we humans are. After Jesus had prayed a third time Judas Iscariot and a group of soldiers came to arrest Jesus. They were expecting him to fight as they had swords ready, Jesus instead walked calmly to meet his fate. Judas’ signal to the soldiers was “The one I kiss is the man; seize him.” Matthew 26:48. Judas greeted Jesus and kissed him, Jesus reply was “Friend, do what you came to do.” Matthew 26:50 Please keep in mind that Jesus, being part of the Trinity was fully God and fully human, he could have called 10,000 angels to relieve him of his pain and just let man perish, but he loved us too much and despite his “sorrowful soul” Matthew 26:38 he willingly went with the soldiers to die. This was the only way any of us could ever gain entrance to heaven, to accept the gift of salvation through crucifixion. OUR sin put him there; forced his hand to save us. He loved us too much to let us die in hell. The Garden of Gethsemane was the gateway to the greatest love act ever performed, and the only one any of us will ever need.

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