Up from the Country and Pressed into Service by Charles H. Spurgeon

Up from the Country and Pressed into Service
Charles H. Spurgeon
Mark 15:21

And they compel one Simon a Cyrenian, who passed by, coming out of the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to bear his cross (Mark 15:21).

John tells us that our Savior went forth bearing His cross (John 19:17). We are much indebted to John for inserting that fact. The other evangelists mention Simon the Cyrenian as hearing the cross of Christ; but John, who often fills up gaps which are left by the other three, tells us that Jesus set out to Calvary carrying His own cross. Our Lord Jesus came out from Pilate's palace laden with His cross, but He was so extremely emaciated and so greatly worn by the night of the bloody sweat, that the procession moved too slowly for the rough soldiers, and therefore they took the cross from their prisoner and laid it upon Simon; or possibly they laid the long end upon the shoulder of the strong countryman, while the Savior still continued to bear in part His cross till He came to the place of doom.

It is well that we should be told that the Savior bore His cross; for if it had not been so, objectors would have had ground for disputation. I hear them say: You admit that one of the most prominent types, in the Old Testament, of the sacrifice of the Son of God, was Abraham's offering up his son Isaac; now, Abraham laid the wood upon Isaac his son, and not upon a servant. Should not therefore the Son of God bear the cross Himself? Had not our Lord carried His cross, there would have been a flaw in His fulfillment of the type ; therefore, the Savior must bear the wood when He goes forth to be offered up as a sacrifice.

One of the greatest of English preachers has well reminded us that the fulfillment of this type appeared to have been in eminent jeopardy, since, at the very first, our Lord's weakness must have been apparent, and the reason which led to the laying of the cross upon the Cyrenian might have prevented our Lord's carrying the cr ...


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