Homily – Good Friday MMX 4/2/10

Homily – Good Friday MMX 4/2/10

Pawtuxet River 11 ft above flood stage 3/31/10

Pawtuxet River 11 ft above flood stage 3/31/10

Save me O God, for the waters have risen to my neck.

I have sunk into the mud of the deep, and there is no foothold,

I have entered deep waters, and the waves overwhelm me.

(Psalm 69)

Last Night, on Holy Thursday Evening, Jesus reclined with His Apostles in the safety and security of the Upper Room, a room high above the flood line, a Room only the Disciples knew the location of, where His enemies could not find Him.

But after the Last Supper, Jesus freely leaves the safety and peace of that Upper Room, and descends down into the Valley of the Garden of Gethsemane to pray and prepare.

And at Midnight on Good Friday, the raging flood waters start flooding the Garden.

Not a 100 year Flood, not even a 500 year flood, but a flood the likes of which has never been seen before or since, a flood far more horrific and devastating than the flood in the time of Noah.

For in Noah’s Day, it was the Good God who for forty days flooded the world with water, to rid the world of Evil Men and to save the Just Man Noah and his family.  But on that Friday, it is Satan who for Forty Hours floods the world with Darkness, to rid the world of Goodness, Truth and Justice, and to destroy the God-Man, Jesus and His disciples.

At Midnight in the Garden, the Dams of Hell burst open, and streaming through the Olive Trees comes a river of lanterns, torches and weapons all converging upon Our Lord.

And then, Jesus the Son of God permits the waters to come crashing upon Him:

-The kiss of betrayal by His best friend,

-The abandonment by all His other friends in His time of greatest need,

-The loss of His freedom, the wrongful arrest,

-The corrupt trial in the middle of the night,

-The false accusations, the slanders, the lies and half truths and twisting of His words,

-The Pharisees stirring up the crowds against Him,

-The people all flocking to the low-life Barabbas and shouting for the crucifixion of Jesus,

-His right hand man swearing to God in public that he never even met Jesus before,

-The political authorities not caring one bit about truth and justice, only out to keep their office,

-The religious authorities even worse, saying their only King is Ceasar, the Priests the main instigators in bringing down the Christ,

And then, the Innocent One, the Truth, the Life, beaten down, Crowned with Thorns and mocked at, condemned as a criminal who should be cast out of decent society;

Stripped of all dignity, all his possessions taken from Him, Nailed to a Tree, humanly unable to move, humanly unable to escape as He is spit at and laughed at and given vinegar to drink.

Wave upon wave upon wave of misery and injustice and sin poured upon Him, until

It is finished.

No angel, or anyone else, comes to save Him at the last minute.

The betrayer, the Barabbas fans, the weak and corrupt religious and political leaders, the brutal Roman Army seem to have won the day, while Truth and Goodness is buried in a sealed tomb.

But even as the flood waters subside late Good Friday afternoon, Mary the Mother of Jesus knows who really won the day, and come Sunday, the Disciples of Jesus will know as well.

For as the Bride in the Song of Songs says, The deepest waters cannot drown my Love, nor can any flood sweep My Love away.

The Suffering,  Death, and Burial of Christ, which shows us the greatness of Jesus’ love for us sinners, also shows us that, as the Song of Song also says, Love is stronger than death.

Lord Jesus, when this world rejects you and crucifies you, may we, with the Virgin Mary and John the Beloved and Mary Magdalen, remain close to you;  May we cling to the Wood of your Holy Cross, knowing that the Cross alone is our one hope, knowing that the Wood of the Cross is the one and only Life Raft that will bring us safely through the  worst of floods this life can send us.

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