Friday, April 22, 2011

Holy Week Journal 2011: A Good Friday Meditation

A Meditation on the Passion
(For Good Friday, and for Friday devotions through the year)

In this meditation, Bishop Lancelot Andrewes combined all of the accounts of Christ’s Passion into one simple overview. It invites us to contemplate the mystery of God’s love for us in Christ and the depths to which he went to embrace us and raise us to glory.

To use this meditation, go through each line slowly, recounting the event as describe in Scripture and picturing it mentally. Reflect on how this part of the Passion speaks to you, and how it is experienced in the lives of others—for Christ’s Passion raises to consciousness the suffering of others. Offer what arises in the heart to God.

This meditation does not end with Christ’s death: it continues to the Second Coming. This reminds us that the Crucifixion we recall on Good Friday (and all Fridays) may never be understood in isolation from the rest of the Paschal Mystery and the story of salvation. If it is, we will likely see only the sorrows of the Cross rather than its power and hope. Remember: we may not weep for Christ on the Cross—it was his purpose and desire to go there. Rather, we may (and must) weep for the sins that put him there.

Only when it is understood as part of the mystery of redemption may we see the Cross as Christ saw it: not only an instrument of shameful death, but his glorious throne whereon God’s victory over sin and death would be won, and the means of eternal life for all marked with it in baptism.

Praise, Blessing, and Thanksgiving

For the death of Christ,
In his obedience unto the death of the cross:
For the things which he suffered,
In his being pressed on every side:

In Gethsemane, Gabbatha, Golgotha – the pains, pangs, the shame, the curse of the cross

That he willed
1  To be betrayed by his own disciple
2  Sold for 30 pieces of silver
            1  vexed in soul
            2  very weary
            3  full of anguish
            4  exceedingly sorrowful, to death
            5  in agony
            6  to utter a loud cry and shed tears
            7  sweat blood like dew on the earth


1  his disciples should fall asleep; to be betrayed by a kiss
2  that his disciples should flee; to be left alone
3  denied by a strong oath, and by a curse
4  subjected to the powers of darkness
            1  seized by hands
            2  arrested as a robber
            3  tied up
            4  dragged off to
                        1    Annas
                        2    Caiaphas
                        3    Pilate
                        4    Herod
                        5    Pilate again
                        6    the Praetorium
                        7    Gabbatha
                        8    handed over
                        9    Golgotha
                        10  Cross

1  Annas and Caiaphas
2  Accusation
3  False witness
4  Condemned of blasphemy
            1  derided in many ways, insulted by servants
            2  beaten up
            3  slaps of the hand
            4  blindfolded
            5  beaten
            6  spat at
            7  jeered at
            8  blasphemed

1  accused of sedition
2  to be denied at the end
3  to be replaced with Barabbas
4  to be hounded to the cross by the will of the crowd

1  dressed him in a gorgeous robe
2  treated him with contempt; sent him back to Pilate

1    renewed demands for his death
2    to a very shameful death
3    handed over to the will of the soldiers
4    dressed in scarlet
5    a stick for a scepter
6    a crown of thorns
7    falling on their knees they jeered
8    they called him king in derision
9    they spat on his face
10  beat him about the head

1  to a pillar
2  beaten with sticks
            a baptism of blood
            Behold the Man! (a grievous sight)
            Away!  Crucify!
            His blood be on us
            sentence of death

to be loaded with the cross
            to sink
            to be given myrrh to drink
            stripped – the shame, the grief
            stretched on the cross
            fixed with nails
            hands and feet pierced
            set in between thieves
            and one of them repenting

            to be mocked by the passers-by
            to be blasphemed by one of the thieves
            My God, my God
            to be derided when he called upon God
            to be given vinegar to drink
            to bow his head
            to give up his spirit
            to have his side pierced with a spear
            when dead to be called a deceiver

            Father forgive
            Mother, behold you son
            Today with me
            My God, my God
            I thirst
            It is finished
            Father, into your hands

1  the precious death
2  the opening of the side
3  blood and water
4  the begging of the body
5  the taking down from the cross
6 the burial in another’s grave
7 for three days
            1  triumph over cosmic powers
            2  mighty resurrection
            Appearance to Magdalene
            to the women
            to Peter
            to those going towards Emmaus
            to the ten without Thomas
            to the eleven with Thomas
            at the sea of Tiberias
            to James
            to the five hundred
            (Transfiguration recalled and understood)
            3  the glorious Ascension
            4  seated at the right hand
            5  distribution of gifts
            6  standing up at our behalf as advocate, as priest
            7  the turning to bless for the second time
            8  the judging of the living and the dead
(Translated by David Scott)

1 comment:

  1. Thank you Brandon. Your words and those before you, help remind us of all that this day is about.