The request of "Greeks" (non-Jews) to see Jesus signals that his hour has come, the time of the inevitable confrontation with the religious authorities. Testimony has been offered, and the hour of judgment has arrived. Jesus will be condemned--but in rejecting him, the world and the "ruler of this world" will be judged. There can no longer be illusions about human life. In bondage to sin, people have no alternative but to hang Jesus from the cross. Paradoxically, Jesus refers to this as the time of his "glorification." His death on the cross will mean his "lifting up" to draw all to himself. Jesus will not be spared the pain and humiliation of death on the cross, but we are invited to fix our attention not on the broken figure, but on the effects of that death: it will mean life for the world. The depth of Christ’s suffering is what Luther called the "theology of the cross." The theology of the cross is Luther's great contribution. Others also spoke of salvation by grace and justification by faith. But he, in a very special way, recovered the scriptural emphasis on Christ's suffering. The Scriptures are full of the theology of the cross, especially Mark, John, Peter, and Paul. Paul strikes the keynote when he speaks of the foolishness of the cross over and against the wisdom of the world in 1 Corinthians 1. The theology of the cross is not a single doctrine or a single chapter in a book. It is like an undercurrent which affects all our thinking. It is an emphasis which colors all our theology, liberating us from false assumptions. Especially in a day when we are saturated with the idea of success, we need this emphasis again. But it is very difficult because it is opposed to all of our "natural" ways of thinking.