Original Question: "Can anyone tell me where the cross and crown symbol comes from? I've done some research and find that it is a symbol associated with freemasonry and occult practices. I see it being used in JGLM and it troubles me a bit. It would be awesome if someone can bring some clarity on this topic."
The Cross and the Crown
It was yesterday evening that I was thinking about the JGLM shield and the symbolism of the cross and crown.
First of all, any symbol should be a trigger point to a larger message. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then symbols are incredibly powerful for preaching a message in a moment. BUT- to the person who doesn't 'see' the message behind the picture, there might as well not even be a symbol at all. For this reason, your question is SO important!
To all who are out there- what immediate message and distinction IMMEDIATELY pops into your mind the moment you see the cross and crown shield? It should not just mean 'JGLM' but the message of Christ that JGLM preaches and lives. Some questions to consider:
-Why is the cross and crown so central to the JGLM message?
-Why not just the cross? Why not just the crown?
-Why is the cross inside the crown, instead of outside the crown?
-Why is the cross leaning?
-What significance is there to the colors?
-Why is all within a shield?
There may be some interesting facts about these symbols being used in freemasons, and the occult, and I wonder if this exact symbol was even used with them or not. I doubt it, but I could be wrong. The reason I doubt it, is because of what these images so clearly speak to me.
The message of JGLM is the message of the Dominion Life of God as manifested in the risen, reigning Son of God and this Life outlived through the redeemed and recreated sons of God. For this reason, the Crown is Central. It is the forefront of the image of who we are manifested to the world, and before the King of kings.
However, inside the crown is the cross. This speaks of the heart of the Son (sons) is not dictatorship, but a life laid down. Taking up the burdens of those who cannot bear them, in love. 'The Son of man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His Life a ransom for many'. Philippians 2 says that it is because of this ability to humble oneself, disciplining oneself, to obey to this point of sacrifice, truly belongs the crown that exalts.
Why is the cross leaning? To me this speaks of 2 things:
#1 It is perpetually in the state of midair, waiting to be caught, waiting to be picked up. Daily. Everytime you look at it, it is saying 'will you catch me? will you discipline and deny yourself today to save someone? If not today, then when? if not you than who?' and
#2 It is leaning forward to the right (forward as in we read left to right) which speaks of progression- never settling, always moving forward, grace to grace, faith to faith, glory to glory. No matter what happened yesterday, The cross that redeems, forgives, and cleanses, also urges you to get up and continue on and run your race that is set before you, endure the cross, despise the shame -and know there IS a joy set before you.
We need BOTH the cross and the crown. The crown without the cross becomes a heartless dictator. A programmed terminator without any heart for what they are fighting for- the manifested redemption the Son of God paid for with His life. But we also need the crown- Otherwise it will be a cold dead remembrance religion- every believer can only go as far as to nobly die, but never overcome. Christianity would only be like any other religion, remembering a dead hero. For this reason, we need BOTH- the hero that loved and died to rescue us, but rose with power to advance the Kingdom of God now and forever through us!
There are 3 jewels, which (could) represent our shining vivid relationship with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. This 3-fold relationship is rooted in the expression of dominion (the crown). Each one of these relationships is important to us and we are not ashamed of them.
The shield: The most obvious symbol is the shield of Faith, by which all the fiery darts of the enemy are quenched. But it also speaks of protection in another sense, because in order to take up this shield, we have to take up the cross and the crown at the same time. According to Luke 10:19, it is only as we are trampling the enemy underfoot, that nothing shall by any means hurt us. We have to keep advancing our dominion with this shield in order for it to fulfill its design and our protection becomes the enemies prison as we march forward.
The color blue? That often speaks of royalty in the Bible. The new riveted design? I think brother Curry was looking for people who who are made of steel, who can go through tough times like a tank or a battle cruiser and still stand firm.
So does the cross/crown design point back to the freemasons and the occult? no- it goes much further than that- it goes to the book of Revelation, where Jesus is both the Lion and the Lamb- the Cross and the Crown. The curse of death is swallowed up by the dominion of Life.
An interesting note: When brother Curry went to south Africa for the 100 year celebration of Dr Lakes arrival in South Africa to start the work there in 1908- he was invited by Dr Lake's denomination that he started there- the AFM (apostolic faith mission), which has thousands of churches throughout Africa and beyond. Brother Curry didn't know this when he chose the specific symbol that we see for JGLM today, but the AFM has almost the exact same symbol for their denomination. (http://www.afm-ags.org) For me this is another confirmation that the Holy Spirit is making sure that this legacy stays consistent, and that both realize the heart of the JGLM message is in these two symbols.
~ Timothy Jorgensen