Friday, April 6, 2012

"It has been the cross which has revealed to good men that their goodness has not been good enough."

“The highest act of love is the giving of the best gift, and, if necessary, at the greatest cost, 
to the least deserving. That’s what God did.”

Hebrews 4:14-16; 5:7-9
Brothers and sisters:
Since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens,
Jesus, the Son of God,
let us hold fast to our confession.
For we do not have a high priest
who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses,
but one who has similarly been tested in every way,
yet without sin.
So let us confidently approach the throne of grace
to receive mercy and to find grace for timely help.

In the days when Christ was in the flesh,
he offered prayers and supplications with loud cries and tears
to the one who was able to save him from death,
and he was heard because of his reverence.
Son though he was, he learned obedience from what he suffered;
and when he was made perfect,
he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him.

Most of the people who participated in Jesus' crucifixion did not hate Him but more importantly, they just didn't love Him. A decision not to love Christ with all our hearts becomes in effect a decision to continue His crucifixion. Each of us has been given the power to crucify Jesus by our sins and our contempt (Catechism, 598; Heb 6:6). We can block Jesus from using our lives for God's glory and defeat God's plan for our lives (Lk 7:30). Or we can allow Him to have full control. We can let Jesus go free and use us in a mighty, earth-shaking way to help build His kingdom on earth.

How will we use the power Jesus Christ gives us?

Because of a fallen human nature, human beings naturally and frequently deceive themselves. The Lord makes clear: "More deceitful than all else is the human heart, who can understand it?" (Jer 17:9) We tend to deceive ourselves about our lukewarmness.

This combination of lukewarmness and self-deception is so dangerous. God became a human being, died on the cross, rose from the dead, and gave His disciples a new nature through baptism to save us from being doomed in our old, selfish nature. We on the other hand must actively nourish this new nature given to us through the Sacrament of Baptism by receiving the Eucharist frequently, going to Confession frequently, and maintaining an active daily prayer life. Without those actions on our part, we will most assuredly fall into a lukewarm state. Remember what our Blessed Lord said about being lukewarm, “because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth (Rev 3:16).

The crowd of the culture of death stands before you, howling for you to "crucify Him" (Jn 19:6) today as it did 2000 years ago. Jesus stands before you too, staring at you with love in each and every decision you make daily. We all know what happened in the year 33AD, Pilate handed Jesus over to be crucified" (Jn 19:16).

What will you decide?

No comments:

Post a Comment