For Our Sake

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Today, is suspended upon the Cross, He Who suspended the Earth upon the waters.

A crown of thorns crowns Him, Who is the King of the angels.

He, Who wrapped the Heavens in clouds, is clothed with the purple of mockery.

He, Who freed Adam in the Jordan, received buffetings.

He was transfixed with nails, Who is the Bridegroom of the Church.

He was pierced with a lance, Who is the Son of the Virgin.

We worship Your Passion, O Christ.

We worship Your Passion, O Christ.

We worship Your Passion, O Christ.

Show us also, Your glorious Resurrection!

XVth Antiphon from the Matins of Holy Friday

The wonder of God’s love is shown to us in the lengths He is willing to go to bring us back to Himself and to unite Himself to us. Pascha and all that leads to it is an utter contradiction – a paradox – an undoing of what cannot be undone. Literalism falls weakly before the wonder of it all. Metaphor is not sufficient. Only the reality can speak for itself, and before that reality we can only fall in worship. In this we know God. We cannot know the contradiction except that we fall down and worship Him. It is not an idea much less an idea about an idea. It is the deepest ground of reality and we can but worship. “Show us also your glorious Resurrection!”

Tonight as we knelt before the cross, the reality of the words we sang became just that – reality. I cannot write in a way that would properly convey such a reality – only to say – this is my God!

About Fr. Stephen Freeman

Fr. Stephen is a priest of the Orthodox Church in America, Pastor Emeritus of St. Anne Orthodox Church in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. He is also author of Everywhere Present and the Glory to God podcast series.



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