As the world already knows, today is Good Friday. On this day even the earth mourns its creator (John 1:1-3) when the Word made flesh died in order to reconcile ourselves to Him (John 3:16).This very day, the Church professes her continuing mission to “preach Christ crucified, stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles (1 Cor 1:23).” Christ crucified remains a stumbling block to many, even those who profess faith in Christ. For a major difference between the Church and those who would choose to deny her is the continued exhibition the of Cross without the One Who died upon it.A cross without the Christ is an instrument of torture and not of redemption!For it the Cross which serves as the Throne of Our King. It is on His throne made of wood beams where Our Blessed Lord wills upon Himself the totality of man’s sin – separation from His Own Divine Nature – God Himself!
It is there that our sin was paid for by the blood of the Paschal Lamb of God. Without His death on Good Friday there would be no Resurrection on Easter. For it is the death that saves,; it is the resurrection that redeems.Those who would justify the display of a cross without the Lamb by pointing solely to the resurrection deny the sacrifice, deny the gift, deny Our Lord and send the message that they would have redemption and glory without the Cross (pp. 216, 224 Life of Christ; Sheen)The bloody sacrifice (death and the suffering) are ONCE and for ALL and transformed by Jesus at the Last Supper into the unbloodied sacrifice, which is represented at the Mass in transcendence of time itself until His return (Malachi 1:11). As Christians we “proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes (1 Cor 11:26).”
Let us meditate on the First Reading for today as presented in the 1962 Roman Missal, Hosea 6:1-6:
1In their affliction they will rise early to me: Come, and let us return to the Lord:
2For he hath taken us, and he will heal us: he will strike, and he will cure us.
3He will revive us after two days: on the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight. We shall know, and we shall follow on, that we may know the Lord. His going forth is prepared as the morning light, and he will come to us as the early and the latter rain to the earth.
4What shall I do to thee, O Ephraim? what shall I do to thee, O Juda? your mercy is as a morning cloud, and as the dew that goeth away in the morning.
5For this reason have I hewed them by the prophets, I have slain them by the words of my mouth: and thy judgments shall go forth as the light.
6For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice: and the knowledge of God more than holocausts.
The official Mass readings for today are:
|Second:||Hebrews 4:14-16; 5:7-9|