Sunday, September 13, 2015
MONDAY - EXALTATION OF THE HOLY CROSS
September 14, 2015 MONDAY - EXALTATION OF THE HOLY CROSS
Nm 21:4b – 9 / Phil 2: 6 – 11 / Jn 3: 13 - 17
[Public veneration of the Holy Cross dates to the fourth century when St. Helena, mother of Emperor Constantine, discovered the true cross in Jerusalem.]
First Reading: Nm 21: 4b – 9
The people were discouraged by the journey and began to complain against God and Moses, "Why have you brought us out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? There is neither bread nor water here and we are disgusted with this tasteless manna."
Yahweh then sent fiery serpents against them. They bit the people and many of the Israelites died. Then the people came to Moses and said, "We have sinned, speaking against Yahweh and against you. Plead with Yahweh to take the serpents away."
Moses pleaded for the people and Yahweh said to him, "Make a fiery serpent and set it on a standard; whoever has been bitten and then looks at it shall live."
So Moses made a bronze serpent and set it on a standard. Whenever a man was bitten, he looked towards the bronze serpent and he lived.
Second Reading: Phil 2:6 – 11
Though he was in the form of God, he did not regard equality with God as something to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking on the nature of a servant, made in human likeness, and in his appearance found as a man. He humbled himself by being obedient to death, death on the cross. That is why God exalted him and gave him the Name which outshines all names, so that at the Name of Jesus all knees should bend in heaven, on earth and among the dead, and all tongues proclaim that Christ Jesus is the Lord to the glory of God the Father.
Gospel: Jn 3:13 - 17
Jesus said to Nicodemus, "No one has ever gone up to heaven except the one who came from heaven, the Son of Man. As Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, so that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.
"Yes, God so loved the world that he gave his only Son that whoever believes in him may not be lost, but may have eternal life. God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world; instead, through him the world is to be saved."
Today, we celebrate the power of the Cross: "Come, let us worship Christ the King who was lifted up on the cross for our sake." (Invitatory for Office of Readings)
The Church has another solemn liturgical celebration of the Cross on Good Friday when the Cross is unveiled and venerated: "This is the wood of the cross, on which hung the Savior of the world. Come, let us worship."
The first reading from the Book of Numbers is about the fiery serpents sent by God from whose bite many Israelites died. At the pleading of Moses, God instructs him to erect a bronze serpent: "Whenever a man was bitten, he looked towards the bronze serpent and he lived." (Nm 21: 9b)
In his conversation with Nicodemus, Jesus refers to the bronze serpent in the desert, "As Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, so that whoever believes in him may have eternal life." (Jn 3: 14 – 15)
Jesus, blameless and innocent, takes on the suffering of the cross and transforms this instrument of oppression into the instrument of our salvation. Obedient to the Father's will, he allows himself to be subjected to the cruelty of men to show the depths of the great love God has for humanity and God's great desire to save humanity.
At Gethsemane before he died, Jesus prayed in great fear, "Abba, all things are possible for you; take this cup away from me. Yet not what I want, but what you want." (Mk 14: 36)
We are saved by Christ's loving obedience to the Father, emptying himself, "taking on the nature of a servant, made in human likeness and in his appearance found as a man. He humbled himself by being obedient to death, death on the cross." (Phil 2: 7 – 8)
WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:
KEVIN PATRICK C. SYLING
ERIC & EUNICE YU AMPIL
ESTELLA & DAVID SOON ENG SIN
IN MEMORIAM (+)
EDISON CO YU (MAR 4, 1952 – SEP 14, 1993)
Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.
Have a good day!
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