Sunday, April 1, 2007

Holy Monday

Monday of Holy Week
April 2, 2007
St. John 12:1-43
“So the Pharisees said to one another, ‘You see that you are gaining nothing. Look, the whole world has gone after him.’” (St. John 12:19)
It seems that everyone was curious about Jesus: Pilate, Herod, the Jews. The word that Jesus had raised Lazarus from the grave was getting around. People were eager to see this great miracle worker. This excitement, of course, was not good news for those who were plotting to careful kill and dispose of Jesus. But the Son of God will not be a victim of their plans. He willingly goes to Jerusalem. No one has the power to take Jesus’ life from Him. He lays it down and He will take it up again. He will be “lifted up”, that is, He will die on the cross to draw all people unto Himself, including the Greeks who came to Philip with the request: ”Sir, we wish to see Jesus,” (St. John 12:21).
They will see him. On a Tree. Jesus said, “The hour has come that the Son of Man should be glorified.” At the wedding in Cana when Jesus performed His first miracle, He said, ”My hour has not yet come,” (St. John 2:4). But the time is now. This was the hour for which He came into the world. It is time for the sinless Lamb of God to take away the sins of the world. What the world would judge to be an hour of shame and defeat, Jesus calls the time of His glorification. In fact, Jesus prays: “Now is my soul troubled, and what shall I say? Father, save Me from this hour? But for this purpose I came to this hour. Father, glorify Your name,” (St. John 12:28).
Glorified how? At the Cross! He says, “Unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain.” St. Augustine put it like this: “The death of Christ was the death of a most fertile grain of wheat.” Planted in death, Jesus will be raised to life on the third day, becoming, as Paul says, “the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep,” (1 Corinthians 15:20).
You are the harvest that is produced by the death of Jesus. His death destroys your death. And by His rising from the grave, He gives you the pledge of your own resurrection to life eternal, the fruit of which He gives you even here and now. In the name of Jesus. Amen.
“Almighty God, our heavenly Father, we implore You that we, who amid so many adversities do fail through our own infirmities, may be restored through the Passion and intercession of Your only-begotten Son, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.” (Collect for Monday of Holy Week)

No comments: