This working of His death in the history of a believer, and in a local church (if it is on a right foundation) will be progressive and periodic. The law of nature is more life, more fruit, more growth, by recurrent winter, alternating experiences of death and life, and every cycle unto increase. This is the law of the Cross. God is not a God who believes in theories; He is immensely practical. The theory of the Cross is universally held. The meaning of the Cross is to displace one entire kind, in order to make room for Another, capital A.
One of the greatest enemies to things being as they should and could be is our superficiality. This is an age of ‘quick returns’, easy gains, least trouble, everything with as little effort and cost as possible. Depth is a lost dimension. Stamina is a minus quality. Who today would take the pains to read such classics on the cross as Dr. Mabie’s The Divine Reason of the Cross and The Meaning and Message of the Cross? This superficiality is costing the Church and Christians very dearly, and so there is artificial life, artificial food, artificial fellowship which will not go through in the time of testing.
There is such a depth, power, fullness, in the Cross of Christ as to spread over all time and all eternity. So saw the Apostle when, at the end of the fullest life, he still cried: “That I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings; being made conformable unto his death” (Philippians 3:10).