The Divine Mystery Of That Cross

Today: The Divine Mystery Of That Cross: a Holy Week reflection and prayer guide to prepare our hearts and minds for Easter. Curated by The Park Forum.

Leviticus 2.6-8
[God said,] “If you offer an animal from the flock as a fellowship offering to the LORD, you are to offer a male or female without defect. If you offer a lamb, you are to present it before the LORD, lay your hand on its head and slaughter it in front of the tent of meeting. Then Aaron’s sons shall splash its blood against the sides of the altar.”

Christ Alone Suffered Death (an excerpt) | by Ambrose of Milan

O the divine mystery of that cross, on which weakness hangs, might is free, vices are nailed, and triumphal trophies raised. For Christ died for us, that we might live in His revived Body. Therefore not our life but our guilt died in Him, “Who,” it is said, “bare our sins in His own Body on the tree; that being set free from our sins we might live in righteousness, by the wound of Whose stripes we are healed.”

That wood of the cross is, then, as it were a kind of ship of our salvation, our passage, not a punishment, for there is no other salvation but the passage of eternal salvation. While expecting death I do not feel it; while thinking little of punishment I do not suffer; while careless of fear I know it not.

Who, then, is He by the wound of Whose “stripes we are healed,” but Christ the Lord? Of Whom Isaiah also prophesied His stripes were our healing, of Whom Paul the Apostle wrote in his epistle: “Who knew no sin, but was made sin for us.” 

That we may know that this mystery of the common redemption was most clearly revealed by the prophets, you have also in this place: “Behold, it has taken away your sins;” not that Christ put aside His sins Who did no sin, but that in the flesh of Christ the whole human race should be loosed from their sins.

Lenten Evening Prayer: The Daily Examen
1. Opening prayer of invitation: become aware of God’s presence (2 minutes).
2. Review the day with gratitude (3 minutes).
3. Pay attention to your emotions (3 minutes).
4. Choose one feature of the day and pray from it (5 minutes).
5. Closing prayer: look toward tomorrow (2 minutes).

Today’s Readings
Leviticus 2-3 (Listen – 4:43)
John 21 (Listen – 3:58)

Holy Week Reflections
Part 2 of 5, read more on TheParkForum.org

___________________

FAQs

How can I make a tax-deductible donation? Click here.
How can I get these devotionals in my inbox? Click here.
What is the reading plan this blog is based on? Click here.

 ___________________________________

The Remedy for a Disquieted Soul

Today: The Remedy for a Disquieted Soul: a Holy Week reflection and prayer guide to prepare our hearts and minds for Easter. Curated by The Park Forum.

John 20.19
On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!”

The Farewell Discourse and Final Prayer of Jesus (an excerpt) | by Don Carson

It is vital to recognize that the peace Jesus gives is not a kind of placid tranquility which avoids all conflict. Jesus himself is heading for the cross; yet he speaks of his peace. 

Similarly, the peace Jesus promises does not avoid trouble; it triumphs over it. Nor is this peace to be confused with aloofness that is indifferent to injustice, corruption, idolatry, or some other sin. It is not simply “feeling good” in some narcissistic way, nor is it some mystical sense of well-being detached from physical and spiritual realities.

The world wishes peace on people. Yet for all its wishing, the world cannot grant the gift of personal peace, but only wish it on someone. At most, it can achieve reconciliation between brothers or between nations; and even then the achievement often proves temporary. 

Christ, by contrast, bequeaths the gift of peace on all his followers, bestowing it as an essential part of the salvation he achieves for them. The cross wins peace with God. The forgiveness, restoration, and healing which flow from this primary peace constitute the only adequate basis for peace with others, and for personal peace within ourselves.

So much of our restlessness and bitterness springs from our possessiveness, our desire for preeminence, our lust for recognition. Our love for self is so strong that it turns to hatred for others who do not give us what we think is our due. 

There is no peace where such sins flourish. Jesus betrayed no possessiveness. He desired his Father’s glory and will, not personal preeminence and popular recognition. Far from loving his life, he gave it up for others—indeed, for others who did not begin to offer him what was his due. And so Jesus could speak of his peace.

Lenten Evening Prayer: The Daily Examen
1. Opening prayer of invitation: become aware of God’s presence (2 minutes).
2. Review the day with gratitude (3 minutes).
3. Pay attention to your emotions (3 minutes).
4. Choose one feature of the day and pray from it (5 minutes).
5. Closing prayer: look toward tomorrow (2 minutes).

Today’s Readings
Leviticus 1 (0 – 2:37)
John 20 (Listen – 4:17)

Holy Week Reflections
Part 1 of 5, read more on TheParkForum.org

___________________

FAQs

How can I make a tax-deductible donation? Click here.
How can I get these devotionals in my inbox? Click here.
What is the reading plan this blog is based on? Click here.

 ___________________________________

Spur a spiritual rhythm of refreshment right in your inbox
By joining this email list you are giving us permission to send you devotional emails each weekday and to communicate occasionally regarding other aspects of the ministry.
100% Privacy. We don't spam.