Posts Tagged ‘Tree of the Cross’

Note:  The following is from A Year With the Church Fathers by Scott Murray, published by Concordia Publishing House.  I think this is an excellent devotional which covers each of the days of the Church Year with the lessons, prayer of the day, a meditation by Rev. Murray and a quote from one of the Church Fathers.  Below is today’s excerpt:  the Meditation is by Rev. Murray followed by a quote from Cyril chosen for this day. I have done the formatting.  Pr. Schroeder

Prayer of the Day

Almighty God, You show those in error the light of Your truth so that they may return to the way of righteousness. Grant faithfulness to all who areadmitted into the fellowship of Christ’s Church that they may avoid whatever is contrary to their confession and follow all I such things as are pleasing to You;through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Psalmody:   Psalm 145:1-9

Additional Psalm: Psalm 94

Old Testament Reading: Exodus 18:5-27

New Testament Reading: Hebrews 12:1-24


Christ bore His cross, despising its shame (Hebrews 12:2). He never apologizes for the cross or acts embarrassed about its suffering and weakness. Instead, He boldly proclaims ignorant those who know not that the Messiah would come to suffer and die. Such persons should never be teachers in Israel (John 3:10). We, too, ought boldly to proclaim our allegiance to the cross of the suffering Lord without any shuffling evasions. We should never be embarrassed by His weakness, because it is the greatest strength through which our salvation is won.

Even the angel, who attends the resurrected Lord at His triumph on the third day, calls Him the crucified One. He who is the head over all things ever remains the crucified. His headship is displayed at the Place of a Skull (Matthew 27:33), where the death’s head gives life to those who are His Body by faith. Golgotha is the place for the Christ to be enthroned upon the tree.

“We can never be tired of hearing about the crowning of our Lord, and least of all in this most holy Golgotha…. Let none be weary. Take your armor against the adversaries in the cause of the cross itself; set up the faith of the cross as a trophy against our opponents. For when you are going to dispute with unbelievers concerning the cross of Christ, first make with your hand the sign of Christ’s cross, and the gainsayer will be silenced. Don’t be ashamed to confess the cross, for angels glory in it, saying, ‘I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified’ (Matthew 28:5)….

“Now Golgotha means ‘the place of a skull.’ Who prophetically named this spot Golgotha, where Christ the true head endured the cross? As the apostle says,

  • ‘He is the image of the invisible God’; and a little after, ‘He is the head of the body, the church’ (Colossians 1:15, 18).
  • And again, ‘the head of every man is Christ’ (1 Corinthians 11:3);
  • and again, ‘who is the head of all rule and authority’ (Colossians 2:10).

The head suffered at ‘the place of a skull: O wondrous prophetic name! The very name also reminds you, saying, ‘Do not think of the Crucified as of a mere man. He is the head of all principality and power. He who was crucified is the head of all power and has for His head the Father, for “the head of every man is Christ…. and the head of Christ is God” ‘ (1 Corinthians 11:3)” (Cyril of Jerusalem, Catechetical Lectures, 13.22-23).

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