Skip to comments.Following the Truth: No Greater Love… [Catholic and Open]
Posted on 04/06/2012 6:57:03 PM PDT by Salvation
Oxford English Dictionary, sense # 8 of “good”: 8. a. Pious, devout; worthy of approbation from the religious point of view. b. of books, etc.: Tending to spiritual edification. the good book: spec. the Bible. c. of a day or season observed as holy by the church. good tide: (a) Christmas; (b) Shrove Tuesday. Cf. GOOD FRIDAY.
Why do they call it Good Friday?
JRR Tolkien called it a Eucatastophe. When it is looked like evil had triumphed, ... then came the Resurrection - a sudden change for “Good” on that Friday.
O, My people! What have I done to thee
that thou shouldst testify against me?
- from The Reproaches
Good Friday 2009: Father Samuel Weber, OSB, director of the Institute of Sacred Music in St. Louis, offers the office of Tenebrae as a printable booklet, with permission to download and use the music, which is mostly in English, "according to the use of the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis. (Tenebrae link, pdf file)
On Good Friday, the entire Church fixes her gaze on the Cross at Calvary. Each member of the Church tries to understand at what cost Christ has won our redemption. In the solemn ceremonies of Good Friday, in the Adoration of the Cross, in the chanting of the 'Reproaches', in the reading of the Passion, and in receiving the pre-consecrated Host, we unite ourselves to our Savior, and we contemplate our own death to sin in the Death of our Lord.
The Church -- stripped of its ornaments, the altar bare, and with the door of the empty tabernacle standing open -- is as if in mourning. In the fourth century the Apostolic Constitutions described this day as a "day of mourning, not a day of festive joy", and this day was called the "Pasch (passage) of the Crucifixion".
The liturgical observance of this day of Christ's suffering, crucifixion and death evidently has been in existence from the earliest days of the Church. No Mass is celebrated on this day, but the service of Good Friday is called the Mass of the Presanctified because Communion (in the species of bread), which had already been consecrated on Holy Thursday, is given to the people .
Traditionally, the organ is silent from Holy Thursday until the Alleluia at the Easter Vigil, as are all bells or other instruments, the only music during this period being unaccompanied chant.
The omission of the prayer of consecration deepens our sense of loss because Mass throughout the year reminds us of the Lord's triumph over death, the source of our joy and blessing. The desolate quality of the rites of this day reminds us of Christ's humiliation and suffering during his Passion. We can see that the parts of the Good Friday service correspond to the divisions of Mass:
1. the Liturgy of the Word -- reading of the Passion.
2. the intercessory prayers for the Church and the entire world, Christian and non-Christian.
3. Veneration of the Cross
4. Communion, or the 'Mass of the Pre-Sanctified.'
First Reading: Isaiah 52:13-53:12
Behold, My servant shall prosper, He shall be exalted and lifted up, and shall be very high. As many were astonished at Him -- His appearance was so marred, beyond human semblance, and His form beyond that of the sons of men -- so shall He startle many nations; kings shall shut their mouths because of Him; for that which has not been told them they shall see, and that which they have not heard they shall understand.
Who has believed what we have heard? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? For He grew up before Him like a young plant, and like a root out of dry ground; He had no form or comeliness that we should look at Him, and no beauty that we should desire Him. He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces He was despised, and we esteemed Him not.
Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; upon Him was the chastisement that made us whole, and with His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to His own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.
He was oppressed, and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is dumb, so He opened not His mouth. By oppression and judgment He was taken away; and as for His generation, who considered that He was cut off out of the land of the living, stricken for the transgression of My people? And they made His grave with the wicked and with a rich man in His death, although He had done no violence, and there was no deceit in His mouth.
Yet it was the will of the Lord to bruise Him; He has put Him to grief; when He makes Himself an offering for sin, He shall see His offspring, He shall prolong His days; the will of the Lord shall prosper in His hand; He shall see the fruit of the travail of His soul and be satisfied; by His knowledge shall the righteous one, My servant, make many to be accounted righteous; and He shall bear their iniquities. Therefore I will divide Him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because He poured out His soul to death, and was numbered with the transgressors; yet He bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
Second Reading: Hebrews 4:14-16; 5:7-9
Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we have not a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
In the days of His flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to Him who was able to save Him from death, and He was heard for His godly fear. Although He was a Son, He learned obedience through what He suffered; and being made perfect He became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey Him.
Gospel [Passion]: John 18:1 - 19:42
When Jesus had spoken these words, He went forth with His disciples across the Kidron valley, where there was a garden, which He and His disciples entered. Now Judas, who betrayed Him, also knew the place; for Jesus often met there with His disciples. So Judas, procuring a band of soldiers and some officers from the chief priests and the Pharisees, went there with lanterns and torches and weapons. Then Jesus, knowing all that was to befall Him, came forward and said to them, "Whom do you seek?" They answered Him, "Jesus of Nazareth." Jesus said to them, "I am He." Judas, who betrayed Him, was standing with them. When He said to them, "I am He," they drew back and fell to the ground. Again He asked them, "Whom do you seek?" And they said, "Jesus of Nazareth." Jesus answered, "I told you that I am He; so, if you seek me, let these men go." This was to fulfill the word which He had spoken, "Of those whom thou gavest Me I lost not one." Then Simon Peter, having a sword, drew it and struck the high priest's slave and cut off his right ear. The slave's name was Malchus. Jesus said to Peter, "Put your sword into its sheath; shall I not drink the cup which the Father has given Me?"
So the band of soldiers and their captain and the officers of the Jews seized Jesus and bound Him. First they led Him to Annas; for He was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, who was high priest that year. It was Caiaphas who had given counsel to the Jews that it was expedient that one man should die for the people.
Simon Peter followed Jesus, and so did another disciple. As this disciple was known to the high priest, he entered the court of the high priest along with Jesus, while Peter stood outside at the door. So the other disciple, who was known to the high priest, went out and spoke to the maid who kept the door, and brought Peter in. The maid who kept the door said to Peter, "Are not you also one of this Man's disciples?" He said, "I am not." Now the servants and officers had made a charcoal fire, because it was cold, and they were standing and warming themselves; Peter also was with them, standing and warming himself.
The high priest then questioned Jesus about His disciples and His teaching. Jesus answered him, "I have spoken openly to the world; I have always taught in synagogues and in the temple, where all Jews come together; I have said nothing secretly. Why do you ask Me? Ask those who have heard Me, what I said to them; they know what I said." When He had said this, one of the officers standing by struck Jesus with his hand, saying, "Is that how You answer the high priest?" Jesus answered him, "If I have spoken wrongly, bear witness to the wrong; but if I have spoken rightly, why do you strike Me?" Annas then sent Him bound to Caiaphas the high priest.
Now Simon Peter was standing and warming himself. They said to him, "Are not you also one of his disciples?" He denied it and said, "I am not." One of the servants of the high priest, a kinsman of the man whose ear Peter had cut off, asked, "Did I not see you in the garden with Him?" Peter again denied it; and at once the cock crowed. Then they led Jesus from the house of Caiaphas to the praetorium. It was early. They themselves did not enter the praetorium, so that they might not be defiled, but might eat the passover. So Pilate went out to them and said, "What accusation do you bring against this Man?" They answered him, "If this Man were not an evildoer, we would not have handed Him over." Pilate said to them, "Take Him yourselves and judge Him by your own law." The Jews said to him, "It is not lawful for us to put any Man to death." This was to fulfill the word which Jesus had spoken to show by what death He was to die.
Pilate entered the praetorium again and called Jesus, and said to Him, "Are you the King of the Jews?" Jesus answered, "Do you say this of your own accord, or did others say it to you about Me?" Pilate answered, "Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed You over to me; what have You done?" Jesus answered, "My kingship is not of this world; if My kingship were of this world, My servants would fight, that I might not be handed over to the Jews; but My kingship is not from the world." Pilate said to Him, "So you are a king?" Jesus answered, "You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth. Every one who is of the truth hears My voice." Pilate said to Him, "What is truth?"
After he had said this, he went out to the Jews again, and told them, "I find no crime in Him. But you have a custom that I should release one man for you at the Passover; will you have me release for you the King of the Jews?" They cried out again, "Not this man, but Barabbas!" Now Barabbas was a robber.
Then Pilate took Jesus and scourged Him. And the soldiers plaited a crown of thorns, and put it on His head, and arrayed Him in a purple robe; they came up to Him, saying, "Hail, King of the Jews!" and struck Him with their hands. Pilate went out again, and said to them, "See, I am bringing Him out to you, that you may know that I find no crime in Him." So Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. Pilate said to them, "Behold the Man!" When the chief priests and the officers saw Him, they cried out, "Crucify him, crucify him!" Pilate said to them, "Take Him yourselves and crucify Him, for I find no crime in Him." The Jews answered him, "We have a law, and by that law He ought to die, because He has made Himself the Son of God." When Pilate heard these words, he was the more afraid; he entered the praetorium again and said to Jesus, "Where are You from?" But Jesus gave no answer. Pilate therefore said to Him, "You will not speak to me? Do you not know that I have power to release You, and power to crucify You?" Jesus answered him, "You would have no power over Me unless it had been given you from above; therefore he who delivered Me to you has the greater sin."
Upon this Pilate sought to release Him, but the Jews cried out, "If you release this Man, you are not Caesar's friend; every one who makes himself a king sets himself against Caesar." When Pilate heard these words, he brought Jesus out and sat down on the judgment seat at a place called The Pavement, and in Hebrew, Gabbatha. Now it was the day of Preparation of the Passover; it was about the sixth hour. He said to the Jews, "Behold your King!" They cried out, "Away with Him, away with Him, crucify Him!" Pilate said to them, "Shall I crucify your King?" The chief priests answered, "We have no king but Caesar." Then he handed Him over to them to be crucified.
So they took Jesus, and He went out, bearing His own cross, to the place called the place of a skull, which is called in Hebrew Golgotha. There they crucified Him, and with Him two others, one on either side, and Jesus between them. Pilate also wrote a title and put it on the cross; it read, "Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews." Many of the Jews read this title, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city; and it was written in Hebrew, in Latin, and in Greek. The chief priests of the Jews then said to Pilate, "Do not write, 'The King of the Jews,' but, 'This man said, I am King of the Jews.'" Pilate answered, "What I have written I have written."
When the soldiers had crucified Jesus they took His garments and made four parts, one for each soldier; also His tunic. But the tunic was without seam, woven from top to bottom; so they said to one another, "Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it to see whose it shall be." This was to fulfill the scripture, "They parted My garments among them, and for My clothing they cast lots."
So the soldiers did this. But standing by the cross of Jesus were His mother, and His mother's sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw His mother, and the disciple whom He loved standing near, He said to His mother, "Woman, behold, your son!" Then He said to the disciple, "Behold, your mother!" And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.
After this Jesus, knowing that all was now finished, said (to fulfill the scripture), "I thirst." A bowl full of vinegar stood there; so they put a sponge full of the vinegar on hyssop and held it to His mouth. When Jesus had received the vinegar, He said, "It is finished"; and He bowed His head and gave up His spirit.
Since it was the day of Preparation, in order to prevent the bodies from remaining on the cross on the sabbath (for that sabbath was a high day), the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away. So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who had been crucified with Him; but when they came to Jesus and saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs. But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water. He who saw it has borne witness -- his testimony is true, and he knows that he tells the truth --that you also may believe. For these things took place that the scripture might be fulfilled, "Not a bone of Him shall be broken." And again another scripture says, "They shall look on Him whom they have pierced."
After this Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly, for fear of the Jews, asked Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus, and Pilate gave him leave. So he came and took away His body. Nicodemus also, who had at first come to Him by night, came bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred pounds' weight. They took the body of Jesus, and bound it in linen cloths with the spices, as is the burial custom of the Jews. Now in the place where He was crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb where no one had ever been laid. So because of the Jewish day of Preparation, as the tomb was close at hand, they laid Jesus there.
The Veneration of the Cross
In the seventh century, the Church in Rome adopted the practice of Adoration of the Cross from the Church in Jerusalem, where a fragment of wood believed to be the Lord's cross had been venerated every year on Good Friday since the fourth century. According to tradition, a part of the Holy Cross was discovered by the mother of the emperor Constantine, Saint Helen, on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem in 326. A fifth century account describes this service in Jerusalem. A coffer of gold-plated silver containing the wood of the cross was brought forward. The bishop placed the relic on the a table in the chapel of the Crucifixion and the faithful approached it, touching brow and eyes and lips to the wood as the priest said (as every priest has done ever since): "Behold, the Wood of the Cross".
Adoration or veneration of an image or representation of Christ's cross does not mean that we are actually adoring the material image, of course, but rather what it represents. In kneeling before the crucifix and kissing it we are paying the highest honor to the our Lord's cross as the instrument of our salvation. Because the Cross is inseparable from His sacrifice, in reverencing His Cross we are, in effect, adoring Christ. Thus we affirm: "We adore Thee, O Christ, and we bless Thee because by Thy Holy Cross Thou has Redeemed the World".
The Reproaches and the Reading of the Passion
The Reproaches (Improperia) are often chanted by a priest during the Good Friday service as the people are venerating the Cross. In this haunting and poignant poem-like chant of very ancient origin, Christ Himself "reproaches" us, making us more deeply aware of how our sinfulness and hardness of heart caused such agony for our sinless and loving Savior. A modern translation of some of the Reproaches, originally in Latin, follows:
My people, What have I done to you? How have I offended you? Answer me!
I led you out of Egypt; but you led your Savior to the Cross.
For forty years I led you safely through the desert,
I fed you with manna from heaven,
and brought you to the land of plenty; But you led your Savior to the Cross.
O, My people! What have I done to you that you should testify against me?
Holy God. Holy God. Holy Mighty One. Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us.
The Passion is read three times during Holy Week -- on Passion Sunday, Holy Thursday, and Good Friday. By very ancient tradition, three clergy read the three principal parts from the sanctuary: Jesus (always read by a priest), Narrator, and all the other individual parts. The people also have a role in this -- we are those who condemn the Lord to death. Hearing our own voices say "Away with Him! Crucify Him!" heightens our consciousness of our complicity by our personal sinfulness in causing His death.
Good Friday Ideas for Families
Catholic schools will be closed on Good Friday so the children will be able to participate in family observances of this solemn day. If possible, the entire family should attend Good Friday services together, or at least make a trip to church to make the Stations of the Cross. Following are a few other suggestions.
Hot Cross Buns. The familiar hot cross buns are sweet rolls with the sign of the cross cut into it, and they are one of several traditional European breads marked with a cross for Good Friday. According to tradition, these buns originated at Saint Alban's Abbey in 1361, where the monks gave them to the poor people who came there. (You may have your own recipe for sweet-rolls to which you can add currants or raisins before shaping and cut a cross in the top before baking; or you can buy them.) These Good Friday buns were very popular, and were sold by vendors who cried,
Hot cross buns, Hot cross buns! One a-penny two a-penny, Hot cross buns!
If you have no daughters, give 'em to your sons!
One a-penny two a-penny, Hot cross buns!
The Three Hours. Some churches hold prayer services during the three hours of Christ's suffering on the Cross. It would be appropriate to observe a period of silence at home, for devotional reading and private prayer (e.g., no radio, television, etc.), especially between the hours of noon and 3 o'clock in the afternoon.
Each member of the family might choose a particularly unpleasant job that has been put off for a long time -- like cleaning the garage or a closet, or scrubbing the bathrooms (we're sure you can think of something!) to emphasize the dreariness apropriate to the day.
Good Friday was thought to be a good day for planting seeds (a reference to the Gospel about the seeds that must be planted in the ground to bear fruit as a metaphor for Christ's necessary death and His burial on this day) so if the weather permits, this could be a worthwhile activity with children. (Don't forget to explain the symbolism.)
With very young children keeping silence during the Three Hours is virtually impossible. You might help them make a miniature Garden of Joseph of Arimathea in the yard. Mother or Father can teach children about the circumstances of Christ's burial and resurrection from the tomb by telling the the story of Joseph, Christ's friend who donated the new tomb where Jesus' body was buried after He was taken down from the Cross. Children can gather small stones, sticks, acorns. etc., for the little garden.
Older children can be given a drawing or coloring project. Perhaps they could draw one or more of the Stations of the Cross.
"Lord, by thy Cross and Resurrection thou hast redeemed the world"
In the symbol of the Cross we can see the magnitude of the human tragedy, the ravages of original sin, and the infinite love of God. Lent is a particularly appropriate time to attempt to penetrate the true meaning of this sacred image represents through prayerful contemplation; and to study the traditions surrounding the Christian symbol of the Cross.
Looking at the Cross in prayer helps us to truly see it. Most Christians have crosses in their homes. Many wear a cross around their necks. Some of these are very beautiful, perhaps made of precious metal and embellished with jewels. The beauty of these devotional objects may emphasize the glory and the victory of Our Lord's Cross; but too often representations of this central symbol of our faith are regarded primarily as decorative, and its true message is lost.
It is fitting that Christians glorify the Cross as a sign of Christ's resurrection and victory over sin and death, of course. But we should remember each time we see a cross that the Cross of Jesus' crucifixion was an emblem of physical anguish and personal defilement, not triumph -- of debasement and humiliation, not glory -- of degradation and shame, not beauty. It was a means of execution, like a gallows or a gas chamber. What the Son of God endured for us was the depth of ugliness and humiliation. We need to be reminded of the tremendous personal cost of love.
As Lent advances we contemplate the redeeming Mystery of the Cross, which aids the Church in her pursuit of the renewal of the faithful. The image of the Cross may help each of us to learn more fully the meaning of Christ's sacrifice, and how we are to imitate His example. We can hope that our prayers, which focus on the Crucifixion of our Lord, will help atone for our own sins and the many grave sins of our society.
The Sign of the Cross
The season of Lent is a most appropriate time for children of all ages to learn more about one of the most distinctively Catholic prayers: the sign of the cross. It is a visible sign (a sacramental) of one's belief in Christ and of one's hope in the redemption which flows from His Cross. Accompanied by the invocation of the Trinity (Doxology), "In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit", making a sign of the cross is a simple and beautiful form of Christian devotion. By making this sign both in public and in private we affirm our faith in Christ crucified and ask for His blessing and protection. It is also a gesture of reverence to the Blessed Sacrament.
This Christian sign is a very ancient one, mentioned by the early Fathers of the Church as being a habitual practice by the second century. Tertullian recounts that "in all our travels in all our coming in and going out, in putting on our shoes, at the bath, at the table we mark our foreheads with the sign of the cross." This sign or mark on the forehead of consecration to Christ has an antecedent in Ezekiel's prophetic vision of judgment, in which the Lord commands that a "mark be set upon the foreheads" of the Israelites who cry out against the evil which surrounds them, so that by this mark God's people were identified as belonging to Him and saved from annihilation [Ezekiel: 9:4-6]. Other biblical references to "sealing" God's people with a sign on their heads are found in the Apocalypse (or Revelation) 7:4, 9:4.
This sacramental "mark" is important to Catholic people to this day. We are anointed, at baptism and at confirmation, by the priest making the sign of the cross on our foreheads with the Oil of Chrism (the oil blessed by bishops at the Mass of Chrism on Holy Thursday). The sign and the chrism are is also used at the ordination of a priest or bishop. In administering the sacrament of the sick the priest anoints the person with the sign of the cross made with blessed oil. Also, on Ash Wednesday, our foreheads are marked by the priest with the sign of the cross made with blessed palm ashes.
Another form of the sign of the cross is made by the priest several times during the celebration of Mass and when he grants absolution and gives other priestly blessings, by making an invisible cross with the the first two fingers and thumb of his right hand extended. A similar gesture of blessing is made when a priest blesses religious objects (these objects used in worship are also called sacramentals), such as rosaries, medals, vestments and articles used used in connection with Mass.
Parents find that even infants can learn to make the sign of the cross, and try to imitate what they see family members doing at the blessing before meals even before they can talk. Try to encourage use of this sign at bedtime prayers, too, when you can explain what it means.
The two forms of the sign of the cross used by most Catholics are:
The Great Sign of the Cross: (This is the one most people think of, and the one people use most often.) A cross is traced with the right hand, touching the forehead, the chest, then the left and right shoulder. [In Orthodox churches, from right to left.] The Doxology is said aloud or silently as the sign is made.
The Little Sign of the Cross: A cross is made on the forehead with the thumb or index finger (this form is used by the priest when anointing or administering ashes). Or a cross is traced with the thumb on one's own head, lips and heart, a gesture which asks Christ to instruct our minds, aid us in our witness, and renew our hearts. (This sign is made at the reading of the Gospel by both priest and people.)
Some suggestions for helping to increase children's awareness of this devotion are:
Give your children a new medal, and ask the priest to bless it for them while they are present.
Have holy water at home for making this sign "in all our coming in and going out."
Before going to Mass, ask the children to notice the different forms of the sign of the cross used during the celebration by the priest and by the people.
The Crucifix, Crosses and Symbols of Christ
The most quintessentially Catholic object of devotion is a crucifix -- a cross (Latin: crux) with the image of Christ's body nailed to it. Crucifixes are always found in Catholic churches and chapels over the altar and are always carried in liturgical processions. This image is venerated by the faithful in a special ceremony on Good Friday. They are a customary fixture in every room and office of Catholic institutions (schools, hospitals), and on the walls of Catholic homes. This form of representing the Cross of our Lord adorns Rosaries, prayer-books, private altars, vestments, and many other devotional articles; also the Pectoral Cross worn by a bishop as a sign of office. The pope's ceremonial staff has a crucifix attached to it (unlike an ordinary bishop's staff, which is formed like a shepherd's crook.) A crucifix is frequently worn by Catholics on a neck-chain.A less common form of the crucifix bears an image of Christ glorified, wearing the vestments of a priest and with his arms extended in blessing.
One way to help increase children's reverence and love for Christ and his cross is to introduce them to traditional Christian symbols. Help them draw several kinds of crosses in addition to the Crucifix (with Christ's body, or "corpus") -- such as the Chi Rho, the first two Greek letters in "Christ" (looks like a capital P with an X through the elongated tail ), the Latin Cross, the Jerusalem Cross, the Greek Cross, the Saint Andrew Cross (an X shape). You might look for various types of crosses in churches, on vestments, and in other places.
Introduce children to New Testament symbols of Christ such as the Lamb, the door, the lamp, etc., Ask them to draw these symbols themselves and then color them. Display them on the refrigerator or in their rooms after they have finished.
John 1:29: The next day John saw Jesus coming towards him, and he said: "Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!"
John 10:1-2, 7-9 : "Amen, amen, I say to you, he who enters not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbs up another way, is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. Amen, amen, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. Those others who have come are thieves and robbers. I am the door. If anyone enter by me he shall find salvation, and shall go in and out, and shall find pastures."
Isaiah 62:1: "For Sion's sake I will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest till her Just One come forth as brightness, and her Savior be lighted as a lamp."
John 8:12 : "I am the light of the world."
THE FOUNTAIN OF LIFE
John 19: 33-34 "When they came to Jesus and saw that He was already dead they did not break his legs; but one of the soldiers opened His side with a lance, and immediately blood and water flowed out."
THE TRUE VINE
John 15: 1-3, 5 : "I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine dresser. Every branch in me that bears no fruit He cuts away; and every branch that bears fruit He trims clean, that it may bear more fruit. I am the vine, you are the branches; He that abides in me brings forth much fruit; for without me you can do nothing.
THE BREAD OF LIFE
John 6:35, 48: Jesus said unto them, "I am the bread of life: He that comes to me shall never hunger. I am that bread of life."
Thanks, Salvation, for the rich material.
This really adds to my Good Friday meditations.
May the Joy of Easter be with you!