The year was 1912. George Bennard, an evangelist, happened to be traveling through the Midwest area and landed in Michigan. While he was there, the story goes, he was being heckled brutally by a group of young men (maybe women too – story doesn’t say). He was greatly bothered by this. His feelings weren’t her per se, but he was more troubled by the absolute scorn and disrespect for the gospel he was sharing that day. In response, he immediately went to the word of God and delved into the scriptures to deal with how he was feeling.
He later said that during that time, “I seemed to have a vision…I saw Christ and the cross inseparable.” Through that pain and time of trying to understand the nature of people, Bennard penned a poem/hymn called, “The Old Rugged Cross.” If anyone has ever been in church, or even outside of church, or even has seen a movie with a church in it – they’ve most likely heard this song. It is timeless.
My favorite excerpt:
“For a world of lost sinners was slain, 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.”