Summary: By invoking the power of the Spirit and linking it to the Cross, Paul effectively dislodges one from any cross-less spirituality.
The Crucifixion of Christ horrified well-disposed pagans, and Christians were taunted with the disgrace of having such a God.
Christian art only gradually overcame the repugnance to realistic representations of the death on the cross.
At first the cross was represented as studded with jewels…
but without the body of Christ.
When the penalty of crucifixion had died out of the memory of men, the figure of Christ hanging upon the cross became more common.
But the gospel message of Jesus Christ and him crucified was such a hard sell that St. Paul says that he first entered Corinth in “weakness and fear and much trembling,” deliberately putting aside grandiose speech and rhetorical strategies to persuade others of the truth, that:
Christ crucified is the source of eternal salvation and the very revelation of God’s wisdom and power.
Paul says: “For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified…. with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power.” (1 Corinthians 2: 1).
Even the most dynamic proclamations of the Gospel remain ineffective unless the Spirit moves the minds and hearts of its listeners to accept it.
By invoking the power of the Spirit and linking it to the Cross, Paul effectively dislodges one from any cross-less spirituality.
The nailing of Jesus to the cross is referenced in Col 2:14, speaking of the cancelling of the bond which stood out against us with its legal demands:
"This he set aside, nailing it to the cross."
The bond was nailed to the cross together with Jesus himself.
The bond is the legal document listing human failures and sin which deserve condemnation. Christ destroyed this legal certificate on the Cross when he cancelled our debt of guilt and won pardon for our crimes.
The issue of your value was settled on the cross.
Stop trusting in self-inflicted guilt and start trusting on the payment of your debt on the cross.
Faith in the love of God when we are faced with sickness or death is what the Word of God teaches us, says Pope Benedict.
LOVE HELD HIM TO THE CROSS.
The genuine existential certainty of God’s love for you by dying on the Cross is what enables coping with whatever God wants the outcome to be, be that joining Him in heaven.