HOLY WEEK – GOOD FRIDAY
LESSON: 2 CORINTHIANS 5:14, 15
Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God. 1 Peter 3:18
Thorns pricked the sacred head of Christ, but you have actually deserved the pricks of more than a hundred thousand thorns. To be sure, you have deserved to be pricked by such thorns in all eternity, and much worse than He was pricked. Christ had to suffer the agony of having His hands and feet pierced with nails; you have deserved to suffer from much worse nails in eternity.
This is what will indeed befall those who disregard Christ’ suffering on their behalf. In this grim reflection, Christ does not lie or scold; what He indicates must surely follow. St. Bernard says, “I thought I was secure and knew nothing of the eternal sentence passed upon me in heaven until I saw that the only-begotten Son of God had mercy on me, stepped forth, and submitted to the sentence of condemnation on my behalf. If there is such seriousness here, it is not for me to play around any longer and to be secure.”
This also explains Christ’s words to the women of Jerusalem: “Do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children.… If they do this when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?” (Luke 23:28, 31). Jesus means to say: “From my sufferings, learn what you have deserved and what will befall you.”
Christ’s sufferings should always be pondered with the greatest of seriousness on our part. They are written for our warning to teach us the awful and horrible nature of sin.
SL 11:577 (6-7)
PRAYER: Lord God, our heavenly Father, let the awful sufferings and death of our Lord Jesus Christ be for us a continual reminder of the horrible nature of all sin in your sight. Move us at all times to a serious consideration of our Savior’s passion and death on our behalf. Amen.