Death and Resurrection of Christ

Download: Death and Resurrection of Christ /a contemplative prayer/

Download: New edition of the prayer booklet for the celebration of Sunday – format doc,        format pdf

 

Introduction

The spiritual resurrection of the Church will begin through a restored celebration of the Day of Resurrection – Sunday.

Early Christians had four fundamental spiritual pillars: a) the apostles’ teaching, b) fellowship (koinonia), c) common prayers, d) the Eucharist (see Acts 2:42). All these four elements need to be realized on the day which is wholly consecrated to God. It is not sufficient just to attend the Divine Liturgy (the Eucharist), but Christians also need to gather in small communities (cells). Again, the pattern for us is the Apostles and early Christians. They not only attended the temple but also gathered in their homes.

We bring forward a model for celebration of the Resurrection Day (every Sunday) as well as prayer models for contemplation of the sufferings of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Last Supper and Gethsemane (reflection) (video)

Last Supper

 

a) 5 minutes – Introduction

On Thursday evening Jesus celebrates the Last Supper with His apostles. The Passover is connected with the sacrificing of the lamb and with the Passover meal. This festival commemorates the passing over of Israel from the slavery of Pharaoh king of Egypt. Jesus came to deliver mankind from the slavery of sin and the devil.

At the beginning, Jesus washed the apostles’ feet. Thus He gave them the example of humility and love. Thereafter, He warns them against the spirit of betrayal, behind which is the devil.

Then Jesus speaks about love: No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s brethren.”

He also speaks about the Holy Spirit: I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. When the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth.

From Gethsemane to Golgotha (Way of the Cross) (video)

 

a) 5 minutes – Introduction

Jesus is arrested: The apostle-traitor brought soldiers and temple guards with torches into Gethsemane. He came near to Jesus and gave Him a traitorous kiss. And the soldiers seized Jesus.

Jesus before Annas: They brought Him to the high priest Annas. He questioned Jesus about many things. One of the guards struck Jesus in the face.

Jesus before Caiaphas: When they had bound Him, Annas sent Jesus to the high priest Caiaphas. Caiaphas said: I put You under oath by the living God, tell us if You are the Christ, the Son of God.” Jesus replied: You have said so.” The high priest tore his clothes and said: “He has uttered blasphemy!” The crowd began to shout: He deserves death!” Then they started to spit in Jesus’ face and strike Him on the head.

GOLGOLHA

Seven words from the cross (reflection) – 1st word from the cross: “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do!” (Lk 23:34) (video)

 

a) 5 minutes – Introduction – Reflection on God’s Word

“There were also two others, criminals, led with Him to be put to death. And when they had come to the place called Calvary, there they crucified Him, and the criminals, one on the right hand and the other on the left. Then Jesus said: ‘Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do!’” (Lk 23:32-34)

“When they had come to the place called Calvary, there they crucified Him…”

Death by crucifixion was the most cruel and disgraceful punishment possible. When they had arrived at the site, Simon of Cyrene was ordered to place the cross he had carried on the ground. Jesus was quickly thrown backward, with His shoulders against the wood. The soldier – executioner – felt for the depression at the front of the wrist and drove a heavy, square wrought-iron nail through it and deep into the wood. The nail cut through the skin and went through the place where the nerve runs which controls much of the function and sensation from the hand.

Seven words from the cross (reflection) – 2nd word from the cross: “Amen, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.” (Lk 23:43) (video)

 

a) 5 minutes – Introduction – Reflection on God’s Word

“One of the criminals who were hanged blasphemed Him, saying: ‘If You are the Christ, save Yourself and us.’ But the other, answering, rebuked him, saying: ‘Do you not even fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward of our deeds; but this Man has done nothing wrong.’ Then he said to Jesus: ‘Jesus, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.’ And Jesus said to him: ‘Amen, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.’” (Lk 23:39-43)

“Jesus…”, the criminal fastens his eyes on Jesus’ tortured face wet with blood: a wound caused by a stroke of a stick across the nose and the right cheek, grazes on the eyelids and eyebrows, a swelling on the cheek, nosebleed, bruises and puncture wounds caused by thorns. The wounds on His hands and feet are bleeding. The criminal hears the mockery and blasphemy by the soldiers as well as by the other criminal hanging on the cross. He can hear the blasphemy by the arrogant hierarchy. He, however, aware of his own sin, looks into Jesus’ eyes, believes in Him and utters with faith: “Jesus, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.” He thus confesses before all that Jesus is really the Son of God who forgives sins and makes us partakers of the kingdom of God. It is a glorious and public confession of Jesus before His enemies taunting Him.

Seven words from the cross (reflection) – 3rd word from the cross: “Behold, your mother!” (Jn 19:26) (video)

 

a) 5 minutes – Introduction – Reflection on God’s Word

“Now there stood by the cross of Jesus His mother… When Jesus therefore saw His mother, and the disciple whom He loved standing by, He said to His mother: ‘Woman, behold, your son!’ Then He said to the disciple: ‘Behold, your mother!’ And from that hour the disciple received her into himself.” (Jn 19:25-27)

“Now there stood by the cross of Jesus His mother…” She sees Him crucified, tortured, His whole body covered in wounds. The crown of thorns in particular causes Him excruciating pain. Pressed into His head, the sharp thorns pierce the scalp and cause copious bleeding. She saw Him fall down on His face several times under the burden of the cross, the falls leaving sore bruises on His knees. When she met Him there, carrying His cross, it was just a split second, and now she is standing here. Jesus sees her again. He is looking at her – Mary is standing here in perfect spiritual unity, crucified together with Him. Standing beside her is the disciple John. When Jesus saw him, He said to His mother: “Woman, behold, your son.” The disciple cannot fully understand how deeply the mystery of his new birth is being accomplished. He is looking at Jesus, for whom he has forsaken all, and Jesus’ word penetrates the innermost of his heart. Here, into his heart, he spiritually receives the mother of Jesus, who has now become his mother too.

Seven words from the cross (reflection) – 4th word from the cross: “I thirst!”(Jn 19:28) (video)

 

a) 5 minutes – Introduction – Reflection on God’s Word

“After this, Jesus, knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the Scripture might be fulfilled, said: ‘I thirst!’ A vessel full of sour wine was standing there; and they filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on hyssop, and put it to His mouth.” (Jn 19:28-29)

Jesus is hanging on the cross. He thirsts. Cruel flogging has lacerated His holy body and He has lost a lot of blood. The whip consisted of three braided leather thongs with metal balls. The flogging first caused deep contusions, then the whips cut through the skin, and as the blows continued, they cut deeper and deeper tearing out muscles even to the bones. Two executioners were scourging Jesus with full force. The heavy whip was brought down across the back, arms and legs, first on the back of Jesus’ body but then also on its front. The soldiers spared no part of the body, not even head and face. The skin of the back was hanging in long ribbons, and the entire area was an unrecognizable mass of torn, bleeding tissue. When Jesus was near death, the flogging was finally stopped. The half-dead Jesus was then untied and allowed to slump to the stone pavement, wet with His own blood. Sudden copious loss of blood caused rapid heart rate, fainting and an extremely strong thirst. The immense pain caused by the open wounds and the strong thirst tormented the Lord Jesus even during His way of the cross. He feels an even more burning thirst on the cross now. His lips are dry, chapped, His tongue has stick to jaws.

Choose language

Search

Word of Life

“Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Rom 6:11 (4/11/2018 – 18/11/2018)