March 30th, 2013| Topic: RaMbLeS | 0


Notre Dame de Paris (“Our Lady of Paris”), is actually one of several churches bearing the name Notre Dame in Paris. But this one, in the fourth arrondissement of Paris is the Notre Dame, one of the most well-known churches in the world, and, built in the late 1100s, it is one of the best examples of French Gothic architecture.

This church also has the distinction of possessing, in its reliquary, what is supposed to be the Crown of Thorns, a portion of the True Cross, and one of the Holy Nails. These are among what are called the “Instruments of the Passion” (Arma Christi). Such relics date back to the purported discovery of the True Cross in the early 4th century, which began a tidal wave of “discoveries” of the Crown of Thorns, various Nails, Holy Lance, Holy Sponge, Holy Chalice, etc., etc., all worthy of veneration among Roman Catholics. Indeed, the viewing of these, according to some Catholic texts, grant the viewer indulgence for a period of days/months/years from Purgatory in the after life.

Those in Notre Dame are among “first-class relics,” items directly associated with the life of Christ, or the physical remains of a saint (bone, hair, limb, etc.)—those of martyrs, of course, being worth more than that of your run-of-the-mill saint.

The Arma Christi in Notre Dame are not for public viewing, thought the Crown of Thorns is displayed the first Friday of the each month and all the Fridays during Lent. Nope, I didn’t get to see it on my trip to Paris last month. Maybe I’d have gotten myself a few years off Purgatory!

Actually, I don’t need any years off Purgatory.

Therefore there is now no condemnation
for those who are in Christ Jesus.
Romans 8:1

For when I placed my trust in Jesus Christ, for the forgiveness of my sins, believing that he, God incarnate, died on the cross and rose on the third day as the Bible teaches, eternal life became mine.

“For God so loved the world,
that He gave His only begotten Son,
that whoever believes in Him
shall not perish, but have eternal life.”
John 3:16

No more is sin an issue for eternal life between God and me. No longer will sin keep me from the presence of God when I die. Only two options: staying here or being with Christ.

In fact, Paul is so confident of this, he thinks he’d be better off dead!

We are of good courage, I say, and prefer rather
to be absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord.
2 Corinthians 5:8

All because the price of sins was paid by Jesus Christ, fully, finally, and forever.

He [God] made Him [Jesus] who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf,
so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
2 Corinthians 5:21

And that’s what we celebrate on Easter. That Jesus Christ, having paid the price of our sins, rose from the dead.

One day they led Him up Calvary’s mountain,
One day they nailed Him to die on the tree;
Suffering anguish, despised and rejected:
Bearing our sins, my Redeemer is He!

One day the grave could conceal Him no longer,
One day the stone rolled away from the door;
Then He arose, over death He had conquered;
Now is ascended, my Lord evermore!

Living, He loved me
Dying, He saved me
Buried, He carried my sins far away
Rising, He justified freely forever
One day He’s coming
Oh glorious day!

J. Wilbur Chapman, 1908

Happy Easter!


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