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The practice of tracing the sign of the cross is most prominent in the Roman Catholic Church but is also practiced in the Eastern Orthodox, Coptic, Lutheran, Anglican, and Episcopalian churches. Th...
In my perspective, the cross was just a killing instrument practiced by the Romans as a form of capital punishment. None of the apostles glorified the cross itself or its sign (they emphasized only the sacrifice of Jesus, by terming "the doctrine of the cross"). The Cross has been glorified by Christians of the Roman Empire. Up to the period of Constantine, the Cross was not used as a symbol of Christianity. Only after Constantine, the Christians who followed him glorified the cross. The Cross is a symbol that denotes ‘Jesus was killed’. Jesus was not the only person who was killed on a Cross. During the rule of Roman emperors, Cross was one of the many instruments used to execute capital punishment. Thus many were killed by crucifixion on the cross. The Cross cannot be a symbol to denote the resurrection of Jesus as Jesus did not resurrect on the cross. The symbol of resurrection of Jesus is the empty tomb. Thus we see that the Cross cannot be symbol of the ‘death and resurrection’ of Jesus. Jesus Christ (1) died, (2) resurrected and (3) saved mankind by forgiving their sins and cleansing them with his blood. A symbol that will denote all the above three attributes alone will qualify to be a symbol that will explain the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Cross cannot symbolize all the above mentioned three attributes. Romans who ruled Europe with their capital at Rome and the Europeanized Christians who were their followers believed that the Cross is the symbol which denoted the above stated three attributes of the Gospel of Jesus. This is a wrong belief.
The sign of the cross was a sign of great physical and mental torture, of unbearable pain, suffering and death. One reason to make the sign of the cross would be to remind ourselves that following Christ means being ready to be persecuted for what we believe. (John 15:20) By making the sign of the cross, we announce to the world that we are not afraid of torture, pain, suffering, even death. (Acts 7:59) The Catholic Church represents Christianity in the eyes of the world, more than any one in the world. We're hated, despised and persecuted because we speak out against abortion, contraception, fornication, divorce, gay marriage and euthanasia, precisely as Jesus said we would be.
According to some Jewish parents always bless their children every day - this is what I am being told by laying their hand on the head of the child. Cross is the symbol of Death and Resurrection of Jesus overcoming the death. I do not find any thing wrong to bless one self or others by the Sign of the Cross, it also symbolize the calling of The Father, The Son & The Holy Spirit. You wear or don't wear the raincoat when it Rains mostly the Catholics use the Sign of the Cross beginning of the prayers and ending of the prayers
Symbolism sometimes is a wonderful tool of our faith. But it is a practice being performed particularly Catholic and Orthodox Christians and other apostolic denominations Making sign of cross is considered as an expression of faith. It is an act of concentration of our Triune God. To understand the sign of cross, we need to look with our right hand. The thumb, the index finger and the middle finger are joined together in the palm of the right hand. The three fingers joiner together express our faith in the Holy Trinity. By the sign of cross we proclaim our faith in the redemption. It also signifies while making the sign of cross we simply pray `Lord I give you my hand, I give you my heart, and my love. I give you my good thoughts,actions and behaviour. Lord forgive all my ins.' Making sign of cross is considered as a simple prayer. There are four distinct movements in making the sign of cross eg. Forehead, stomach, left shoulder and right shoulder. It symbolically means that Jesus Christ came down from heaven to earth to save the whole mankind of sinners(children of Satan) of left sides to children of God of right sides.
I understand that there are many traditions that exist in various religious sects. They are originally created to further express themselves when praying to God. This is my opinion...I see no problem with expressing the traditions of your faith as long as the glory goes to God and not to man. If the sign of the cross becomes just a motion of habit when used at particular times then one should consider why they are doing it...for others to see them doing it, or just a habit. We all need to be thoughtful and review the reasons why we practice traditions, what are our motives? I have wondered why we use the phrase "to remind me of what Jesus did for me on the cross" when using motions (like the sign of the cross) or symbols (such as a cross worn around the neck). I wear cross jewelry too. But, in my opinion, I don't think it should be noted as a reminder. Christians don't need to be reminded. We think and converse with God all the time, every day. I think of what a non-Christian would think of our faith if we needed signs or symbols to REMIND us of our God. Just some thoughts here to consider. Love you all as my sisters and brothers in Christ Jesus, as we all strive together to be more and think more about Jesus.
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