Suffering and death of our Lord
Judas has completed his betrayal and Jesus is taken captive. This happens after the Lord in Gethsemane has received the suffering from the Father’s hand and has said His yes to all that now lay before Him.
A yes that went through fear and pain of death; a yes, after he had asked his father that this cup should pass him by (cf. Mt 26:39-44); a yes of total surrender to the Father; a yes out of love for us humans.
Now he abandons himself completely to the suffering which he bears for our salvation:
All the mockery and humiliation, the insults, the heartlessness he encounters. All the hatred of darkness spreads over him, the terrible darkness of sin with its terrible remoteness from God. The hour of the adversary’s triumph seems to have come!
But it is not the hour of wickedness, even if it claims to be. It is the hour of the Lord, in which darkness will be conquered forever. It is the hour of the Lord’s unspeakable love for his Father and for us, his lost creatures. It is the hour in which our heavenly Father offers forgiveness of guilt and salvation to all mankind. It is the hour of the Lord, it is Holy Friday, the day of salvation.
Like a lamb led to the slaughter, the Lord walks the path we call the Way of the Cross. Outwardly totally disempowered, inwardly carried to fulfil the will of the Father completely. There the people in Jerusalem meet the suffering servant of God, the Messiah for whom they have been waiting, who came differently than they had expected, without external honours and without the conduct of an earthly king.
On this way to the Crucifixion he meets his Mother who suffered with him, Veronica who shows him her love, the weeping women who take pity on him – souls who are not blinded like the others who cause him pain.
And then the perfection. Jesus lets himself be crucified to carry out his task to the end. From the cross he redeems humanity. The cross becomes the sign of our salvation! The heavenly father himself made the sacrifice that Abraham did not have to make. He gave his son for us!
What can we say?
We worship You, Holy God, and thank You,
for You have redeemed us through Your love
which went for us to the cross.
Glory be to You!