Today, we have Catholic and Orthodox churches (and a few others) using the crucifix whereas most Protestant denominations have an empty cross. Did this empty-cross split happen around when Martin Luther "created" the Protestant church, or did it happen later? Also, why did the change of symbol happen?
In history there have always been reasons to show a crucifix without a corpus.1 Especially in the first four centuries of Christianity it was – because of theological reservations – not possible to illustrate the suffering servant figure of Jesus Christ: They thought that it was not beneficial for the majesty of Christ's divinity.2
Another trail leads us to Calvinism: Also there led a sovereign, bordering to the abstract image of God to a sober view of the cross without a corpus.3
1: Burkard Porzelt, Empirische Religionspädagogik, 175