"Your Crown has been bought and paid for, all you have to do is put it on"!
I personally have no knowledge of in what context James Baldwin made this quote. There are several ways it might be interpreted. One way speaks to how our ancestors already went through certain things which paved the way for us... so that we don't have to go through the exact same struggles as they did.
However besides speaking to our ancestors there is a deep full rich spiritual message here; about How Christ bought our salvation with the power of the love and grace, in the sanctifying work of the cross. A True Christian will understand that Christ's work on the cross was utterly called for, and ALL SUFFICIENT! Have you heard these people calling themselves christians who go around talking about wrath, and judgement day, and punishment; about hell and damnation? While I don't refute the reality of hell, I know it is far different than what people currently perceive it to be....just like heaven and anything else having to do with Spirit! Why are these people not declaring God's Love, Forgiveness, Mercy, and Redemption? Any redemption, salvation, forgiveness, wrath, punishment, and or judgement that needed to be dealt out was done so while Christ was on the cross. Did you hear that? People keep waiting for a judgement day ....HEY... HEAR ME....HEAR ME NOW...IT HAS ALREADY HAPPENED! IT HAPPENED ON THE CROSS!
There is nothing you can do, nor anything you could have ever done to earn salvation...it was given freely....but it comes with a price! the price of submission to Divine Will. What we can do....and what we must do is whatever we can to help advance humanity, serve God, protect nature, safe guard the future to the best of our abilities; and to help usher in The Kingdom of God into the plain of our common sight! We start doing this when we pick up "The Crown" that was purchased for us and place it on our heads and wear it proudly...declaring... defiantly if need be... "I am a child of The Living God who Created The Entire Universe and I AM here to bear witness to The Truth of God's existence and Love. I am here to help others find their crowns and put them on! I am here to serve through my passion and vocation which I have been called to as a ministry; so that the Kingdom of God which is already here within us and all around us can manifest through me and others into this earth bound plain"!
Christ took our crown of thorns and wore it through the gates of death so that with him we could resurrect to eternal life wearing a crown of jewels!
The Year of the Lord’s Favor
because the Lord has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,
2 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
3 and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the Lord
for the display of his splendor.
and restore the places long devastated;
they will renew the ruined cities
that have been devastated for generations.
5 Strangers will shepherd your flocks;
foreigners will work your fields and vineyards.
6 And you will be called priests of the Lord,
you will be named ministers of our God.
You will feed on the wealth of nations,
and in their riches you will boast.
you will receive a double portion,
and instead of disgrace
you will rejoice in your inheritance.
And so you will inherit a double portion in your land,
and everlasting joy will be yours.
I hate robbery and wrongdoing.
In my faithfulness I will reward my people
and make an everlasting covenant with them.
9 Their descendants will be known among the nations
and their offspring among the peoples.
All who see them will acknowledge
that they are a people the Lord has blessed.”
my soul rejoices in my God.
For he has clothed me with garments of salvation
and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness,
as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest,
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
11 For as the soil makes the sprout come up
and a garden causes seeds to grow,
so the Sovereign Lord will make righteousness
and praise spring up before all nations.
So go my brothers and sisters....if you haven't put on your Crown of Glory...Your Halo of True Light from True God...go pick up your crown and place it on your head...then Go Tell it on the mountain! Go witness in all areas of life...not in word so much, as in deed and always with what virtue you can summon to your aid! Go and be Bare...and then Bear Witness! We must go out; the way Christ who was The Way came in.... In Spirit and in Truth...Authentic and honest in loving kindness. Bringing beauty, faith, hope, and joy to all those we can, and to all of life which we are able to! Christ said what he did, we will do and more...so let us begin! Now is the time...Now is the year of Jubilee and of The Lord's Favor! It is Time to make a stand in our light against the growing darkness of this world and declare The Kingdom of Eternal Light and usher it in! It Is Time!