by St. John Chrysostom
The Cross destroyed the enmity
of God towards man,
brought about the reconciliation,
made the earth Heaven,
associated men with angels,
pulled down the citadel of death,
unstrung the force of the devil,
extinguished the power of sin,
delivered the world from error,
brought back the truth,
expelled the demons,
destroyed temples,
overturned altars,
the sacrificial offerings,
implanted virtue,
surrounded the Churches.

The Cross is the will of the Father,
the glory of the Son,
the rejoicing of the Spirit,
the boast of Paul,
for he says,
“God forbid that I should boast
save in the Cross
of our Lord Jesus Christ.”1

The Cross is that
which is brighter than the sun,
more brilliant than the sunbeam;
for when the sun is darkened,
then the Cross shines brightly.

And the sun is darkened,
not because it is extinguished,
but because it is overpowered
by the brilliancy of the Cross.

The Cross has broken our bond;
it has made
the dungeon of death
it is the demonstration
of the love of God.

“For God so loved the world
that He gave His only-begotten Son,
that every one who believes in Him
should not perish.”2
And again Paul says: “If,
when we were enemies,
we were reconciled to God
by the death of His Son.”3

The Cross is the impregnable wall,
the invulnerable shield,
the safeguard of the rich,
the resource of the poor,
the defense
of those who are endangered,
the armor
of those who are attacked,
the means
of suppressing passion,
and of acquiring virtue,
the wonderful and marvelous sign.

“For this generation
seeks after a sign:
and no sign shall be given it
except the sign of Jonah”;4
and again Paul says,
“for the Jews ask for a sign
and the Greeks seek wisdom,
but we preach Christ crucified.”5

The Cross opened Paradise,
it brought in the thief,
it conducted
into the kingdom of Heaven
the human race,
which was about to perish,
and was not worthy
even of earth.

So great are the blessings
which have sprung
and do spring
from the Cross….
— St. John Chrysostom
(Against Marcionists and Manichaeans, 2)
1 Galatians 6:14
2 John 3:16
3 Romans 5:10
4 Matthew 12:39; Luke 11:29
5 1 Corinthians 1:22-23