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The Old Rugged Cross

The Old Rugged Cross

So I’ll cherish

the old rugged Cross,

Till my trophies at

last I lay down;

I will cling

to the old rugged Cross,

And exchange it some day

for a crown.

George Bennard was born in Youngstown, Ohio, in 1873, less than forty-five minutes from my own hometown of Alliance. He also happened to be the writer of one of my all-time favorite hymns, “The Old Rugged Cross.” It is arguably the most beloved hymn of all time.

After coming to Christ during a Salvation Army meeting, Bennard and his wife became active in the Methodist Church. It is said that he wrote “The Old Rugged Cross” in response to some ridicule he had received. The source or topic of the ridicule isn’t clear, but his response is found in the lyrics of the hymn. His answer was to cling to the cross. He is reported to have said that, for him, “Christ and the Cross were inseparable.”

Perhaps it is best that we do not know the specific reason Bennard was ridiculed. Who among us has not faced criticism or torment of some kind? We can relate to his situation without knowing the details — maybe even more so because we do not know the details. We can then apply his answer to anything we encounter.

  • The answer is always to cling to the Cross.

Have you ever been mocked for your faith? Cling to the Cross.

Have you ever been misunderstood? Cling to the Cross.

Have you endured hardship and heartache? Cling, sweet friend, to the Cross.

Don’t be afraid to bear its shame and reproach because, one day, you’ll exchange it for a crown.

Lord, help me to always be true to the Cross.

Excerpted with permission from 100 Favorite Hymns by Stacy Edwards, copyright Thomas Nelson.

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Your Turn

Cling to the Cross. No matter what is going on in your life today, the answer is “cling to the Cross”. Jesus came and paid for you. Personally. So no matter what you are enduring, know that Jesus is with you, for you, He loves you, He will never leave you, and the Cross is the proof of His unfailing love. Come share your thoughts with us. ~ Devotionals Daily