One Protestant objection I hear quite often has to do with “our cross.” The objection usually goes something like this: “Jesus died once and for all, for everyone. Any problems or difficulties we may encounter stem from our human nature or condition. To say that God gives us a cross that we must bear is not only unbiblical but minimizes Jesus’ ultimate sacrifice at Calvary.” In other words, we’re carrying a cross Jesus already died on!
Unbiblical? What about the words of Christ himself: “”If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me”” (Luke 9:23)?
While it is true that problems and difficulties stem from our human condition, they are permitted by God because they have the ability to conform us more perfectly to him. Taking up our cross is not in opposition to his cross, but our feeble attempt to be one with him in the love he has shown us in carrying his. We express love most sublimely through sacrifice, as Scripture abundantly shows us.