Crossroads Connection for the Week of February 18
 
Welcome to the new page on our site. I will be placing several articles here that will inform, inspire, feed and challenge you in your walk with Jesus.
Please read and enjoy all the articles. 
 
Article #1 
 
The Olympics Have Begun! What Can We Learn from the Top Athletes?
 
Is physical activity, like running, swimming, and dancing, an act of worship unto the Lord? |
The Olympics Have Begun! What Can We Learn from the Top Athletes?
 
Just last week, the torch in Pyeonchang, South Korea, was lit; the 2018 Winter Olympic Games have begun. Over the next week or so, the world will watch as teams compete in a myriad of events from bobsledding to biathlons across the snowy slopes.

Athletic events like this are an incredible display of human talent and the wondrous works that are our physical bodies. These competitors’ capacity to perform such feats of physical strength and mental discipline are an astounding testament to God’s creative genius.

Believers competing at this level recognize that their capabilities are a gift from God to be used for his glory. In Romans 12, Paul instructs believers, because of God’s mercy, to offer our bodies as a “living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God,” saying that this is a form of “true and proper worship.”

Many (rightly) apply this to their work, athletics, and other efforts.

Many churchgoers might find this verse and the application quite puzzling. Worship in our minds involves music, lyrics, and raised hands. It’s something you do in church before the pastor gets up to give a sermon; it gives glory and praise to God and brings peace to our weary hearts. But Paul’s understanding of worship seems much broader.

Now, that does not devalue the worship we do in church. But we can work as worship. We can run as worship. And there is much more.

So, in light of the Olympics, it is worth considering at this time.

As Christ’s church, do we consider physical activity—be it running, swimming, or dancing—as acts of worship unto the Lord? Do we understand that God is glorified in our stewardship of the gifts and talents he has so graciously given to us?

Few Olympic athletes knew this better than Eric Liddell. Most know him from the Oscar winning 1981 film Chariots of Fire; those who’ve seen it know that Liddell was no ordinary competitor. The races he managed to win throughout his career baffled whole crowds and fellow competitors alike.

Callings in Competition

Most notably, Liddell wasn’t just a runner.

He was a missionary with great love for the people of China. He felt this tension rising within him between two passions—one for the track, another for spreading the gospel. They seem to most Christians to be at odds with one another; in these cases, we tend to separate what we see as secular from that which is sacred.

Some believers would look at Liddell’s life and love for preaching and be quick to ship him off to China without a second thought. Many would assume that God is most glorified through our engagement in that which is overtly spiritual in nature; going to church is more ‘holy’ than dance rehearsal or clay class, etc.

But Liddell’s words in Chariots of Fire might indicate something different. In one of the films most beloved scenes, the runner explains:

I believe that God made me for a purpose—for China. But, he also made me fast. And when I run, I feel his pleasure. To give that up would be to hold him in contempt… It’s not just fun; to win, is to honor him.

Liddell knew that his purpose in this life—his calling—wasn’t singular. It couldn’t be reduced down to one activity, place, or people. For Christians, no activity is ‘secular,’ all is sacred because we—our hearts, minds, and bodies—belong to a holy God.

Eric’s heart for the Chinese people wasn’t an accident but neither was his athletic ability; both were good gifts from God and capable of bringing his kingdom purposes to bear here on earth.

Looking at his performance in the 400m at the 1924 Olympics, God’s use of Liddell in an athletic capacity becomes even clearer. Liddell was originally supposed to run in the 100m (his best event), but decided not to when the race was scheduled for Sunday—the Lord’s day. Instead, he chose to compete in the 400m against Horatio Finch, who had previously broken the world record in this event.

In one of the Olympics’ most remarkable moments, Finch retold how Liddell “pushed himself like a man possessed,” overtaking his competitors and winning the event. The crowd, as the Press Association reported, “went into a frenzy of enthusiasm.”

And all because Liddell had the courage to run the race set before him: to follow God and obey him faithfully.

Implications for Us

Our first task is acknowledging God’s sovereignty. Instead of telling him how we feel our gifts might be used best, we must learn to walk in obedience.

That involves work, athletics, and so much more.

Eric Liddell later authored a book called The Disciplines of the Christian Life, in which he advocated for a life lived in the knowledge of God; obedience to God’s will, he says, is the “secret of spiritual knowledge and insight.” According to Liddell, “You will know as much of God, and only as much of God, as you are willing to put into practice.”

Ultimately, our journeys of faith aren’t just about knowing but living. Like Liddell, we must learn to be obedient to Christ’s command—to ‘go and do likewise’ whether we’re missionaries, Olympic athletes, school teachers, or stay-at-home moms.

A life lived in obedience to God and his good plan is ultimately the only sort of life we were created for.

Ed Stetzer holds the Billy Graham Distinguished Chair of Church, Mission, and Evangelism at Wheaton College, is executive director of the Billy Graham Center, and publishes church leadership resources through Mission Group.

 
Article #2
 

He's Coming--Now What?

By Skip Heitzig

At about four o'clock every afternoon, my mother used to say the same thing to me: "Your father will be home soon." Those words were either very exciting to me or struck fear in my heart. If I was living well that day, I looked forward to seeing Dad. But if I was pushing my boundaries, it was more like, "Uh-oh."

Do you look forward to the future? Jesus is coming. Judgment is coming. A new heaven and a new earth are coming. Does that excite you? Or does it strike fear and dread in your heart?

Today I want to look briefly at some of the last verses in the Bible, found in Revelation 22. At this point, the apostle John had written everything that needed to be said about the end times and Jesus' return; what was left was the personal application of knowing that these things will come to pass. In other words, since Jesus could come back at any moment (see 1 Corinthians 1:7; 16:22; Philippians 3:20; 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10; 4:15-17; Titus 2:11-13), what should we do about it? Revelation 22 shows us five responses: walk, worship, witness, work, and willingness.

First, we ought to have a walk that corresponds with the truth: "Behold, I am coming quickly! Blessed is he who keeps [pays attention to and obeys] the words of the prophecy of this book" (v. 7; see also vv. 9, 14). God gave us the book of Revelation so that we might walk in obedience to Him and live in the light of His coming. Knowing that He's coming back should make us less temporal and more eternal in our perspective, our choices, and our relationships (see 2 Peter 3:10-12).

The second response we should have is to worship. Read John's response to hearing the truth in verses 8-9. He couldn't help but worship! Let me ask you this: Can you hear about Jesus Christ vanquishing all the enemies of the earth and setting up an eternal kingdom and walk away from that not worshiping? When we read about what God has in store for us, how can we remain nonchalant? You'll be worshiping the Lord for all eternity--are you preparing for that by worshiping Him now "in spirit and truth" (John 4:23)?

The third response is to witness: "And [the angel] said to me, 'Do not seal the words of the prophecy of this book, for the time is at hand'" (v. 10). In other words, "The message that I gave you, as wild as it is, is not to be hidden. It's to be heralded." Prophecy will motivate you not only toward godly living but also toward godly witnessing. How can you read about the tribulation, hell, and judgment and not be moved to share the truth with people? The receiver of the gospel must also be a transmitter of the gospel.

The fourth response is to work: "And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work" (v. 12). You're not saved by works, but in heaven, you will be rewarded based on what you're doing for Jesus Christ now (see 2 Corinthians 5:10). How much of your time and talent do you spend serving Him? Today is the day of opportunity. Let's work now while we have time.

The fifth and final response is actually an invitation to the unbeliever, if they're willing: "And the Spirit and the bride say, 'Come!' And let him who hears say, 'Come!' And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely" (v. 17). If you haven't yet accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior, you can come right now and drink of His free, refreshing, eternal springs of water.

Prophecy--particularly the book of Revelation--reveals that a new world awaits us. Jesus Himself said, "I go to prepare a place for you" (John 14:2). He's preparing it right now, and one day He'll come back and take you there (see John 14:3). Are you ready for Him? Do you look forward to His coming?

Copyright (c) 2018 by Connection Communications. All rights reserved.

 
 Article #3
 
Where’s My “Atta-Girl”?
Lynn Cowell
LYNN COWELL

“When the princes in Israel take the lead, when the people willingly offer themselves — praise the LORD! Hear this, you kings! Listen, you rulers! I, even I, will sing to the LORD; I will praise the LORD, the God of Israel, in song.” Judges 5:2-3 (NIV)

You’ve just completed a major project or prepared a simple dinner. At the end of all your work and effort, there was silence. No applause. No thank-you. Not even an “atta-girl.”

Devotion Graphic

How does that make you feel?

Honestly, when I find myself in that situation, I wish I could say I’m fine. More than fine, since I’m doing all I do for the Lord alone. I’d like to think I don’t need others’ recognition.

Unfortunately, I’m not all the way there yet. This “getting-past-performing” girl still gets stuck if the thanks or compliments never come.

I am so grateful for a woman like Deborah who models what it looks like to be a woman who doesn’t have to have the pats on the back. I encourage you to read this strong woman’s story found in Judges 4:1-16. God chose Deborah to fill a military leadership role in the Bible. She was the only woman to fulfill not only that role, but she also served as judge over all the Israelites. (This was in the days before the nation of Israel had a king.) Co-leading an army of 10,000 against an army with 900 chariots, Deborah, together with Barak, defeated the enemy.

Following this major victory, we read Deborah’s proclamation in Judges 5:2-3, “When the princes in Israel take the lead, when the people willingly offer themselves — praise the LORD! Hear this, you kings! Listen, you rulers! I, even I, will sing to the LORD; I will praise the LORD, the God of Israel, in song.”

After such an amazing accomplishment, I don’t hear Deborah singing her own praises. No, not here, not in the verses before nor in the verses after. In fact, not only does Deborah not shine the light on her own success, but centuries later when the New Testament book of Hebrews was written, her name is actually missing.

“And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson and Jephthah, about David and Samuel and the prophets, who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions” (Hebrews 11:32-33, NIV).

Here in the Hall of Faith, Deborah’s co-leader is listed; meanwhile Deborah, a very important playmaker, is left out.

If Deborah could somehow have seen this New Testament passage, how do you think she would have responded?

After looking closely at her life, I think I can say Deborah would not be like me, wondering where her appreciation was. She obeyed God and did what she was called to do. Accolades and applause were not part of the package.

I see in Deborah that the confident woman doesn’t need appreciation. Deborah didn’t have to have an “atta-girl” from anyone but God. She continually pointed to God, never needing to draw attention to herself.

A confident woman doesn’t crave other people’s approval because she already has God’s. When we know we have His approval, our craving for other people’s approval decreases.

I’d love to say, “That’s me!” So self-assured, I don’t need reassurance from another. I’m not quite there yet; maybe you’re not, either. But, as we continue to learn about faith from women like Deborah, we can keep moving closer to becoming secure women with Christ-like confidence.

Lord, I so want to be a woman whose whole purpose is to shine light on You. Build in me a confidence — built on You and Your approval of me — that no longer craves or needs the applause of others. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.


Truth For Today

Colossians 3:23-24 “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.” (NIV)

Psalm 115:1, “Not to us, O LORD, not to us, but to Your name give glory because of Your lovingkindness, because of Your truth.” (NASB)

 
 
 
 
 
Article #4
 

When Satan Attacks Your Destiny

"When the Philistines heard that David had been crowned king of Israel, they tried to capture him; but David was told that they were coming and went into the stronghold. The Philistines arrived and spread out across the valley of Rephaim. Then David asked the Lord, 'Shall I go out and fight against them? Will you defeat them for me?”- (2 Sam 5:17-19).

When you are about to enter your destiny, there is always opposition from Satan designed to prevent you from fulfilling your destiny.

When Jesus was born, Herod tried to kill him. When Jesus was baptized and fasted 40 days, Satan came to tempt Him in an effort to derail his destiny. When David had been anointed king over Israel, God's destiny had been revealed for all to see-even Satan. So, Satan raised up the Philistines to try and kill David's destiny.

However, in response, we see David do two things. First, he retreats to his stronghold. It is a place of protection. It is a quiet place. Second, he inquires of God. It is here that he inquires of God for the strategy to defeat his enemy. God reveals it to him and he goes on to defeat the Philistines. In fact, David NEVER lost a battle because he learned to inquire of God for the strategy to defeat his enemies.

Do you know God's intended destiny for your life? Beware of Satan's strategy to attack you in the place of your destiny. His desire is to take you off this divine path.

We must follow David's example in response to the enemy of our souls. We must retreat to our stronghold, seek the Lord, and listen for His answer. Then, we will fulfill the purpose for which God created us.


 
 Article #5
 
 

Five Reasons Why Children’s Ministry Is So Important

So why is the children’s ministry so important? The Church Answers community let us know, with most of the responses fitting in one of five categories.

  1. Millennials have a lot of kids. The Millennial generation is the largest generation in America’s history (though they may be surpassed by Gen Z). There are 78 million young adults ranging in ages from 18 to 38. And they have lots of kids. If they visit a church, one of their highest priorities is the quality of the children’s ministry.
  2. A healthy children’s ministry usually results in a healthy student ministry. It makes sense. If there is quality teaching and ministry for the children, these children are more likely to move to student ministry better prepared for life and better discipled for God’s work.
  3. A quality children’s ministry requires a large volunteer force. Indeed, this rationale was one of the key reasons the leaders at Church Answers responded in unanimity for calling a children’s minister. Leading the volunteer ministry can be a full-time job by itself.
  4. If churches desire to reach families, they must be prepared to reach children. If the Boomer generation acted like helicopters and hovered over their kids, the Millennial generation is acting like sidecars, and want to go wherever the motorcycle/child goes. You can’t reach a family with kids unless you are really prepared to reach the kids.
  5. Parents insist on safety, security, and hygiene for their kids. We live in a nervous time heightened by the greater awareness of sex abuse, shooters, and germs. Parents want to know the church is a safe place for their kids. The presence of a quality children’s minister is a huge positive statement for these parents.

 
 
A Physician Analyzes the Crucifixion

A medical explanation of what Jesus endured on the day He died
by Dr. C. Truman Davis

Several years ago I became interested in the physical aspects of the passion, or suffering, of Jesus Christ when I read an account of the crucifixion in Jim Bishop's book, The Day Christ Died. I suddenly realized that I had taken the crucifixion more or less for granted all these years - that I had grown callous to its horror by a too-easy familiarity with the grim details. It finally occurred to me that, as a physician, I did not even know the actual immediate cause of Christ's death. The gospel writers do not help much on this point. Since crucifixion and scourging were so common during their lifetimes, they undoubtedly considered a detailed description superfluous. For that reason we have only the concise words of the evangelists: "Pilate, having scourged Jesus, delivered Him to them to be crucified ... and they crucified Him."

Despite the gospel accounts' silence on the details of Christ's crucifixion, many have looked into this subject in the past. In my personal study of the event from a medical viewpoint, I am indebted especially to Dr. Pierre Barbet, a French surgeon who did exhaustive historical and experimental research and wrote extensively on the topic.

An attempt to examine the infinite psychic and spiritual suffering of the Incarnate1 God in atonement2 for the sins of fallen man is beyond the scope of this article. However, the physiological and anatomical aspects of our Lord's passion we can examine in some detail. What did the body of Jesus of Nazareth actually endure during those hours of torture?

Gethsemane

The physical passion of Christ began in Gethsemane. Of the many aspects of His initial suffering, the one which is of particular physiological interest is the bloody sweat. Interestingly enough, the physician, St. Luke, is the only evangelist to mention this occurrence. He says, "And being in an agony, he prayed the longer. And his sweat became as drops of blood, trickling down upon the ground" (Luke 22:44 KJV).

Every attempt imaginable has been used by modern scholars to explain away the phenomenon of bloody sweat, apparently under the mistaken impression that it simply does not occur. A great deal of effort could be saved by consulting the medical literature. Though very rare, the phenomenon of hematidrosis, or bloody sweat, is well documented. Under great emotional stress, tiny capillaries in the sweat glands can break, thus mixing blood with sweat. This process alone could have produced marked weakness and possible shock.

Although Jesus' betrayal and arrest are important portions of the passion story, the next event in the account which is significant from a medical perspective is His trial before the Sanhedrin and Caiaphas, the High Priest. Here the first physical trauma was inflicted. A soldier struck Jesus across the face for remaining silent when questioned by Caiaphas. The palace guards then blindfolded Him, mockingly taunted Him to identify them as each passed by, spat on Him, and struck Him in the face.

Before Pilate

In the early morning, battered and bruised, dehydrated, and worn out from a sleepless night, Jesus was taken across Jerusalem to the Praetorium of the Fortress Antonia, the seat of government of the Procurator of Judea, Pontius Pilate. We are familiar with Pilate's action in attempting to shift responsibility to Herod Antipas, the Tetrarch of Judea. Jesus apparently suffered no physical mistreatment at the hands of Herod and was returned to Pilate. It was then, in response to the outcry of the mob, that Pilate ordered Barabbas released and condemned Jesus to scourging and crucifixion.

Preparations for Jesus' scourging were carried out at Caesar's orders. The prisoner was stripped of His clothing and His hands tied to a post above His head. The Roman legionnaire stepped forward with the flagrum, or flagellum, in his hand. This was a short whip consisting of several heavy, leather thongs with two small balls of lead attached near the ends of each. The heavy whip was brought down with full force again and again across Jesus' shoulders, back, and legs. At first the weighted thongs cut through the skin only. Then, as the blows continued, they cut deeper into the subcutaneous tissues, producing first an oozing of blood from the capillaries and veins of the skin and finally spurting arterial bleeding from vessels in the underlying muscles.

The small balls of lead first produced large deep bruises that were broken open by subsequent blows. Finally, the skin of the back was hanging in long ribbons, and the entire area was an unrecognizable mass of torn, bleeding tissue. When it was determined by the centurion in charge that the prisoner was near death, the beating was finally stopped.

Mockery

The half-fainting Jesus was then untied and allowed to slump to the stone pavement, wet with his own blood. The Roman soldiers saw a great joke in this provincial Jew claiming to be a king. They threw a robe across His shoulders and placed a stick in His hand for a scepter. They still needed a crown to make their travesty complete. Small flexible branches covered with long thorns, commonly used for kindling fires in the charcoal braziers in the courtyard, were plaited into the shape of a crude crown. The crown was pressed into his scalp and again there was copious bleeding as the thorns pierced the very vascular tissue. After mocking Him and striking Him across the face, the soldiers took the stick from His hand and struck Him across the head, driving the thorns deeper into His scalp. Finally, they tired of their sadistic sport and tore the robe from His back. The robe had already become adherent to the clots of blood and serum in the wounds, and its removal, just as in the careless removal of a surgical bandage, caused excruciating pain. The wounds again began to bleed.

Golgotha

In deference to Jewish custom, the Romans apparently returned His garments. The heavy patibulum3 of the cross was tied across His shoulders. The procession of the condemned Christ, two thieves, and the execution detail of Roman soldiers headed by a centurion began its slow journey along the route which we know today as the Via Dolorosa.

In spite of Jesus' efforts to walk erect, the weight of the heavy wooden beam, together with the shock produced by copious loss of blood, was too much. He stumbled and fell. The rough wood of the beam gouged into the lacerated skin and muscles of the shoulders. He tried to rise, but human muscles had been pushed beyond their endurance. The centurion, anxious to proceed with the crucifixion, selected a stalwart North African onlooker, Simon of Cyrene, to carry the cross. Jesus followed, still bleeding and sweating the cold, clammy sweat of shock. The 650-yard journey from the Fortress Antonia to Golgotha was finally completed. The prisoner was again stripped of His clothing except for a loin cloth which was allowed the Jews.

The crucifixion began. Jesus was offered wine mixed with myrrh, a mild analgesic, pain-reliving mixture. He refused the drink. Simon was ordered to place the patibulum on the ground, and Jesus was quickly thrown backward, with His shoulders against the wood. The legionnaire felt for the depression at the front of the wrist. He drove a heavy, square wrought-iron nail through the wrist and deep into the wood. Quickly, he moved to the other side and repeated the action, being careful not to pull the arms too tightly, but to allow some flexion and movement. The patibulum was then lifted into place at the top of the stipes4, and the titulus5 reading "Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews" was nailed into place.

The left foot was pressed backward against the right foot. With both feet extended, toes down, a nail was driven through the arch of each, leaving the knees moderately flexed. The victim was now crucified.

On the Cross

As Jesus slowly sagged down with more weight on the nails in the wrists, excruciating, fiery pain shot along the fingers and up the arms to explode in the brain. The nails in the wrists were putting pressure on the median nerve, large nerve trunks which traverse the mid-wrist and hand. As He pushed himself upward to avoid this stretching torment, He placed His full weight on the nail through His feet. Again there was searing agony as the nail tore through the nerves between the metatarsal bones of this feet.

At this point, another phenomenon occurred. As the arms fatigued, great waves of cramps swept over the muscles, knotting them in deep relentless, throbbing pain. With these cramps came the inability to push Himself upward. Hanging by the arm, the pectoral muscles, the large muscles of the chest, were paralyzed and the intercostal muscles, the small muscles between the ribs, were unable to act. Air could be drawn into the lungs, but could not be exhaled. Jesus fought to raise Himself in order to get even one short breath. Finally, the carbon dioxide level increased in the lungs and in the blood stream, and the cramps partially subsided.

The Last Words

Spasmodically, He was able to push Himself upward to exhale and bring in life-giving oxygen. It was undoubtedly during these periods that He uttered the seven short sentences that are recorded.

The first - looking down at the Roman soldiers throwing dice6 for His seamless garment: "Father, forgive them for they do not know what they do."

The second - to the penitent thief7: "Today, thou shalt be with me in Paradise."

The third - looking down at Mary His mother, He said: "Woman, behold your son." Then turning to the terrified, grief-stricken adolescent John , the beloved apostle, He said: "Behold your mother."8

The fourth cry is from the beginning of Psalm 22: "My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?"

He suffered hours of limitless pain, cycles of twisting, joint-rending cramps, intermittent partial asphyxiation, and searing pain as tissue was torn from His lacerated back from His movement up and down against the rough timbers of the cross. Then another agony began: a deep crushing pain in the chest as the pericardium, the sac surrounding the heart, slowly filled with serum and began to compress the heart.

The prophecy in Psalm 22:14 was being fulfilled: "I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint, my heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels."

The end was rapidly approaching. The loss of tissue fluids had reached a critical level; the compressed heart was struggling to pump heavy, thick, sluggish blood to the tissues, and the tortured lungs were making a frantic effort to inhale small gulps of air. The markedly dehydrated tissues sent their flood of stimuli to the brain. Jesus gasped His fifth cry: "I thirst." Again we read in the prophetic psalm: "My strength is dried up like a potsherd; my tongue cleaveth to my jaws; and thou has brought me into the dust of death" (Psalm 22:15 KJV).

A sponge soaked in posca, the cheap, sour wine that was the staple drink of the Roman legionnaires, was lifted to Jesus' lips. His body was now in extremis, and He could feel the chill of death creeping through His tissues. This realization brought forth His sixth word, possibly little more than a tortured whisper: "It is finished." His mission of atonement9 had been completed. Finally, He could allow His body to die. With one last surge of strength, He once again pressed His torn feet against the nail, straightened His legs, took a deeper breath, and uttered His seventh and last cry: "Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit."

Death

The common method of ending a crucifixion was by crurifracture, the breaking of the bones of the leg. This prevented the victim from pushing himself upward; the tension could not be relieved from the muscles of the chest, and rapid suffocation occurred. The legs of the two thieves were broken, but when the soldiers approached Jesus, they saw that this was unnecessary.

Apparently, to make doubly sure of death, the legionnaire drove his lance between the ribs, upward through the pericardium and into the heart. John 19:34 states, "And immediately there came out blood and water." Thus there was an escape of watery fluid from the sac surrounding the heart and the blood of the interior of the heart. This is rather conclusive post-mortem evidence that Jesus died, not the usual crucifixion death by suffocation, but of heart failure due to shock and constriction of the heart by fluid in the pericardium.

Resurrection

In these events, we have seen a glimpse of the epitome of evil that man can exhibit toward his fellowman and toward God. This is an ugly sight and is likely to leave us despondent and depressed.

But the crucifixion was not the end of the story. How grateful we can be that we have a sequel: a glimpse of the infinite mercy of God toward man--the gift of atonement, the miracle of the resurrection, and the expectation of Easter morning.

1 Incarnate
2 Atonement
3 Horizontal portion of the cross
4 Vertical portion of the cross
5 Small sign stating the victim's crime
6 Gambling
7 The one who felt remorse for his sins and asked Jesus to help him.
8 As Jesus was dying, He gave his trusted friend responsibility for the care of His mother.
9 Taking our place by suffering the death penalty for our sin.

Dr. C. Truman Davis is a graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine. He is a practicing ophthalmologist, a pastor, and author of a book about medicine and the Bible.

Editors' note: If Jesus had remained dead, Christianity would be nothing but an empty promise. But three days after His death, He rose again from the dead. This is the miracle of resurrection, which is what Christians celebrate at Easter. To learn more about the resurrection, read John chapters 20 and 21.