by James Merritt

The Glory of the Cross
James Merritt
Galatians 6:14


1. Off the coast of South China, on a high hill overlooking the harbor of Macao, is a huge wall. This wall is the only thing that remains from a massive cathedral that Portuguese settlers built on that hill hundreds of years ago.

2. A typhoon hit that cathedral, literally reducing it to ruins. Everything except this front wall was totally leveled. High on top of that wall stands a huge bronze cross.

3. In 1825, Sir John Bowring was sailing a ship off this same coast when a terrible storm hit, breaking his ship apart and throwing him into the water. He was holding on to a board for dear life, thinking he was going to pickled in that China sea, believing that all had been lost, including his own life.

4. When all of a sudden through the storm, he caught sight of this bronze cross atop the cathedral wall. In that moment God spoke to him and he knew in his heart that God was going to deliver him, and that his life would be spared. Indeed, he was miraculously rescued.

5. John Bowring was so moved by how God had spared his life, that he wrote a poem that years later was put to music, and for over one hundred and fifty years God's people have sung this song over and over:

In the cross of Christ I glory,
Tow'ring o'er the wrecks of time;
All the light of sacred story
Gathers round its head sublime.

When the sun of bliss is beaming,
Light and love upon my way,
From the cross the radiance streaming,
Adds more luster to the day.1

6. That song could have been the theme song of the Apostle Paul. Paul had much that he could have boasted about when he was alive. In his day he was the church's greatest preacher, greatest mission-ary, greatest apologist, greatest theologian, and greatest author. He wrote more books than anyone else in the Bible; almost one-half of the New Testament.

7. But whenever Paul boasted it was not in himself, but of all things in a cross. As he put it ...

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