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Thread: What is the significance of three crosses?

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    Senior Member Jeremy D. Scott's Avatar

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    What is the significance of three crosses?

    I know that Jesus was crucified between two thieves, that one gospel account gives that one criminal mocked Christ while the other asked for remembrance (Luke), and that other gospel accounts tell us that they were thieves and both derided Christ (Mark & Matthew; John simply mentions the other two with nothing about who or what they were or said).

    But what's the significance of using three crosses as a symbol? If it's meaningful to you, what makes it meaningful? This is of no eternal significance, the meaning has just been lost on me, and I'd like to share in it.

    I've thought of a couple of things:
    - It could be a reminder that Christ died for sinners.
    - It could be a reminder that Christ died for both those who "accept" him and those who don't.

    Others?

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    Senior Member Bill Morrison's Avatar

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    Re: What is the significance of three crosses?

    It reminds us that it is not our circumstances but OUR CHOICE that determines our eternal destiny. Both sinners were in the same situation, but one chose to accept eternal life and the other chose to curse God and die. We all still make one choice or the other today.

    BILL
    Thanks David Graham, Diane Likens - "thanks" for this post

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    Host Theology Forum David Graham's Avatar

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    Re: What is the significance of three crosses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Morrison View Post
    It reminds us that it is not our circumstances but OUR CHOICE that determines our eternal destiny. Both sinners were in the same situation, but one chose to accept eternal life and the other chose to curse God and die. We all still make one choice or the other today.

    BILL
    Although some choose to do nothing at all (eg apathy), but the result is still "death"
    Thanks Bill Morrison - "thanks" for this post

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    Senior Member Hans Deventer's Avatar

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    Re: What is the significance of three crosses?

    It reminds us how the uniqueness of the cross is not in the cross itself, but in the One who hang there.
    Love the sinner, hate the sin? Love the sinner and hate your own sin! - Tony Campolo
    Thanks Paul DeBaufer - "thanks" for this post

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    Re: What is the significance of three crosses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy D. Scott View Post
    I know that Jesus was crucified between two thieves, that one gospel account gives that one criminal mocked Christ while the other asked for remembrance (Luke), and that other gospel accounts tell us that they were thieves and both derided Christ (Mark & Matthew; John simply mentions the other two with nothing about who or what they were or said).

    But what's the significance of using three crosses as a symbol? If it's meaningful to you, what makes it meaningful? This is of no eternal significance, the meaning has just been lost on me, and I'd like to share in it.

    I've thought of a couple of things:
    - It could be a reminder that Christ died for sinners.
    - It could be a reminder that Christ died for both those who "accept" him and those who don't.

    Others?
    I don't see it as a symbol but can see:

    Of the two I have noted one received eternal life by asking (not works) The other didn't receive a reply at all from Jesus. (not even a return mock from Jesus) I mean Jesus knew where He was going and had a lot of "mock room" Thats perfection from Jesus.

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    Site Manager G R 'Scott' Cundiff's Avatar

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    Re: What is the significance of three crosses?

    To me, the single, empty cross symbolizes the entire ministry of Jesus, especially the resurrection. A depiction of three crosses is a specific reference to Calvary and his suffering for us there.

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    Re: What is the significance of three crosses?

    The Eastern orthodox cross with the three crosses:
    The small cross that is above the large cross is the thief that has been lifted up by Christ to God and redeemed with Him. The slanted cross at the bottom is that of the thief who mocked Jesus and was lost, thus in one image you see the two choices set before us when looking at the cross of Christ.

    Another story says the lower slanted cross is the cross of St Andrew who brought the gospel to the north and east. The large cross is Jesus' cross and the small cross on top is your cross.

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    Senior Member Jeremy D. Scott's Avatar

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    Re: What is the significance of three crosses?

    Quote Originally Posted by G R 'Scott' Cundiff View Post
    To me, the single, empty cross symbolizes the entire ministry of Jesus, especially the resurrection. A depiction of three crosses is a specific reference to Calvary and his suffering for us there.
    This makes the most sense to me so far. Thanks, Scott, I hadn't thought of it that way.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dale Cozby View Post
    The Eastern orthodox cross with the three crosses:
    The small cross that is above the large cross is the thief that has been lifted up by Christ to God and redeemed with Him. The slanted cross at the bottom is that of the thief who mocked Jesus and was lost, thus in one image you see the two choices set before us when looking at the cross of Christ.

    Another story says the lower slanted cross is the cross of St Andrew who brought the gospel to the north and east. The large cross is Jesus' cross and the small cross on top is your cross.
    Thanks, Dale. I hadn't heard that before. I searched a bit more: here is some more on them.


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    Senior Member Billy Cox's Avatar

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    Re: What is the significance of three crosses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy D. Scott View Post
    I know that Jesus was crucified between two thieves, that one gospel account gives that one criminal mocked Christ while the other asked for remembrance (Luke), and that other gospel accounts tell us that they were thieves and both derided Christ (Mark & Matthew; John simply mentions the other two with nothing about who or what they were or said).

    But what's the significance of using three crosses as a symbol? If it's meaningful to you, what makes it meaningful? This is of no eternal significance, the meaning has just been lost on me, and I'd like to share in it.

    I've thought of a couple of things:
    - It could be a reminder that Christ died for sinners.
    - It could be a reminder that Christ died for both those who "accept" him and those who don't.

    Others?
    It doesn't matter much to me as long as Jesus' cross is taller than the other two.

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