Good Friday Homily - April 2, 2021 - Christ Our Passover Lamb is Sacrificed for Us
Christ Our Passover
has been sacrificed
Jesus Christ the innocent in place of the guilty,
offers himself and ascends the cross
to face the final powers of evil
that our frail humanity had been subject to
for all of time:
the powers of sin and death.
The Gospel of John
of all of the Gospels in the Bible
makes this truth clear and apparent.
When the mob comes to Gethsemane,
the very words of Christ
echoes of the power of the revealed name of God to Moses
"I AM THAT I AM,"
resound once again in Jesus's exchange with the soldiers:
"Whom are you looking for?"
They answered, "Jesus of Nazareth."
Jesus replied, "I AM he."
With such force the Holy Name leaves the Son of God's mouth
that even those who had come to arrest him
fall to the ground.
And yet, even though Christ the Son of God
makes apparent his power over those who would be his captors,
freely submits to them.
For he is our Passover Lamb,
who takes away the sin of the world.
Even when the Judeans,
those Jews of higher influence who lived in Jerusalem
hand Jesus over to the Romans for judgment,
Jesus does not incite his disciples to fight for his freedom.
But what does he say instead?
To Peter: "Put your sword back into its sheath.
Am I not to drink the cup that the Father has given me?"
To Pilate: "My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world,
my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews.
But as it is, my kingdom is not from here."
the very Son of God,
continues down the path to the cross,
because he has come to set all people free
from the powers of sin and death.
Even as Jesus hangs upon the cross,
his focus was ever so tied to the will of God,
his own divine will for the salvation of humanity,
that when it comes time to relinquish his spirit,
he says, quite simply,
"It is finished."
The sacrifice of the Spotless Lamb of God is accomplished.
The Lamb given of God's own substance,
God's very revelation in Jesus Christ the Son of God
has finished what he has come to do
upon the Holy Cross.
the work of Christ
and the promise of Christ
still has one more part to fulfill.
In spite of what seems to be a failure by human standards,
or what may be a disgrace to the Judeans
or even the killing of a common criminal to the Romans,
the Lamb of God who was slain
has promised that upon the third day,
he will rise again.
Now we are left to wait upon that promise,
perhaps in the darkness of pain,
Now, we must remain and do what we must,
just as Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus the Pharisee
Jesus's faithful disciples,
do with Christ's body.
Now, we must receive his body from the Romans,
prepare the spices,
bury Our Lord,
and roll the stone over the tomb.
And in so doing,
perhaps even in a faithful way,
await to see what happens next.
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.