So well put that it would be a shame not to share:
The cross, we note, already had a symbolic meaning throughout the Roman world, long before it had a new one for the Christians. It meant: we Romans run this place, and if you get in our way we’ll obliterate you— and do it pretty nastily too. Crucifixion meant that the kingdom hadn’t come, not that it had. Crucifixion of a would-be Messiah meant that he wasn’t the Messiah , not that he was. When Jesus was crucified , every single disciple knew what it meant: we backed the wrong horse. The game is over.
Wright, N. T. (2009-04-24). Surprised by Hope (Kindle Locations 798-802). HarperCollins. Kindle Edition.
And then came the resurrection and all those that thought they backed a loser realized that God backed this Jesus! Hope returned and because of that, lives changed. Their lives. Radical living happens when you swing from the valley of despair to the peak of joy!