The cross was not a sad mistake, as some may think, but crucial to the mission of Jesus.
At the cross, Jesus made a once-for-all sacrifice for the sins of the world. He made propitiation to God for all the sins of all of God’s people throughout all the ages.
Jesus’ death is central to Christianity.
The symbol for Christianity, is not an empty tomb or a dove, but a cross.
The importance of the cross may seem self-evident, but a characteristic of prosperity preachers, with their false theology and ”victorious” version of Christianity, is that they downplay the importance of the cross. They speak about victory, anointing and breakthrough; but they seldom speak about the sin-bearing death of Jesus.
Jesus’ death was not a tragic accident. Jesus’ death was not like the suicide bomber whose vest accidentally explodes. It was not the case, as many think, “If only Jesus had lived longer, imagine how much more good he could have done.” It was not the case that Jesus found himself caught up in circumstances beyond his control that unfortunately lead to his premature death.
The New Testament says that Jesus died at exactly the right time (Galatians 4:4) according to the definite plan of God (Acts 2:23).
Mel Gibson’s movie Passion of the Christ came out in 2004. It was a phenomenal box office success and confounded industry experts. It was one of the fastest money-making movies at the time, only Spiderman and Lord of Rings: Return of King grossed more money. Hollywood has realized that there is market for so-called Christian films – which may be a good or bad thing.
The Passion of the Christ movie again fuelled the big debate: Who killed Jesus? Who was responsible for Jesus’ death and does it actually matter?