On this Feast we call “Good Friday” listen to these words from the second century by Saint Melito of Sardis. They include both a prayer to Jesus and something for us to consider.
You have given yourself for redemption:
soul for soul,
body for body,
blood for blood,
man for many,
and death for death.
O strange and unspeakable mystery:
The Judge was judged.
He who loosed the bound was bound.
He who created the world was fixed with nails.
He who measures heaven and earth was measured.
He who gives creatures life died.
He who raises the dead was buried.
What is this new creation?
The Judge is judged and is silent.
The invisible is seen on the cross and is not ashamed.
The infinite is contained and does not complain.
The impassible suffers and does not seek vengeance.
The immortal dies and does nothing.
The King of Heaven is buried and endures it.
What is this strange mystery?
What a strange and wondrous mystery we celebrate today. Jesus, the promised and hoped for Messiah died for the sins of the world. The Bible tells us that
Jesus died in SIN (he carried in his body our own sins);
Jesus died in OBEDIENCE;
Jesus died in FAITH; and
Jesus died in LOVE.
What is our response? We can THANK, PRAISE, WORSHIP, GLORY AND LOVE. But above all, we must LIVE WITH AND FOR THE LORD.