March 21

John 12:27-33

“Now is the judgment of this world; now the ruler of this world will be driven out. And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” vss. 31-32

John presents the basic outline of Jesus’ suffering and death in pretty much the same way as the other gospel writers, but the tone is entirely different. While the other three give the gruesome details of a horrible death, for John this is a moment of triumph for Jesus. The cross was no sad ending to a failed ministry, but a decisive step toward the salvation of all creation. It signalled an end to the domination of sin and death and opened the way to the ultimate victory of life–and not just for a few, but for all people. One day in Christ Jesus, the Alpha would become the Omega, and all would join the heavenly celebratory dance. Again, no time-table is set–John simply holds out the promise, and for centuries the faithful have hung on to the hope. And every year during this season of Lent we’re drawn by the texts and our traditions to contemplate the glory of the Cross. Some of us will even sing the old hymn, “In the Cross of Christ I glory, towering o’er the wrecks of time. All the light of sacred story gathers round its head sublime.” It really is the center of sacred story, and it is the source of light and hope for all believers. Its mysterious truth even now continues to sustain us!

Thought for the Day: What is the message of my favorite Lenten hymn?

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