Daily Reading & Meditation
43 And all were astonished at the majesty of God. But while they were all marveling at everything he did, he said to his disciples, 44 “Let these words sink into your ears; for the Son of man is to be delivered into the hands of men.” 45 But they did not understand this saying, and it was concealed from them, that they should not perceive it; and they were afraid to ask him about this saying.
Meditation: Do you know the majesty of God? When we ascribe majesty to someone or something we acknowledge greatness in that person or thing and voice our respect for it. The miracles of Jesus revealed the awesome power and majesty of God and his favor and blessing (grace) – especially towards the lowly and humble of heart.
God’s way to victory and glory is through the cross
But with the miracles Jesus also gave a prophetic warning: There can be no share in God’s glory without the cross. Jesus prophesied his own betrayal and crucifixion – but it did not make any sense to the disciples because it did not fit their understanding of the Messiah who was supposed to come and free his people from tyranny and oppression. Little did they know that the way to victory over sin and death would be through the cross and resurrection of Christ.
Our fear of suffering betrays our lack of hope in Christ’s victory
When the disciples heard Jesus’ prediction of suffering and betrayal they were afraid to ask further questions. Like a person who might receive bad news from the doctor about some tumor or disease that could destroy them and then refuse to ask any further questions, the disciples of Jesus didn’t want to know any more about the consequences of possible suffering, defeat, and death on a cross. They couldn’t understand how the cross could bring victory and lead to new life and freedom in Christ.
How often do we reject what we do not wish to see? We have heard God’s word and we know the consequences of accepting it or rejecting it. But do we give it our full allegiance and mold our lives according to it? Ask the Lord Jesus to show you his majesty and glory that you may grow in reverence of him and in godly fear (reverence) of his word.
“Lord Jesus, by your cross you have redeemed the world and revealed your glory and triumph over sin and death. May I never fail to see your glory and victory in the cross. Help me to conform my life to your will and to follow in your way of love and holiness.”
3 You turn man back to the dust, and say, “Turn back, O children of men!”
4 For a thousand years in your sight are but as yesterday when it is past, or as a watch in the night.
5 You sweep men away; they are like a dream, like grass which is renewed in the morning:
6 in the morning it flourishes and is renewed; in the evening it fades and withers.
12 So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.
13 Return, O LORD! How long? Have pity on your servants!
14 Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.
17 Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us, and establish the work of our hands upon us, yes, the work of our hands establish it.
Daily Quote from the early church fathers: The scapegoat foreshadowed Christ’s passion, by Cyril of Alexandria (376-444 AD)
“The mystery of the passion may be seen also in another instance. According to the Mosaic law, two goats were offered. They were not different in any way from one another (Leviticus 16:7-8), but they were alike in size and appearance. Of these, one was called ‘the lord,’ and the other was called ‘sent-away.’ When the lot was cast for the one called ‘lord,’ it was sacrificed. The other one was sent away from the sacrifice, and therefore had the name of ‘sent-away.’ Who was signified by this? The Word, though he was God, was in our likeness and took the form of us sinners, as far as the nature of the flesh was concerned. The male or female goat was sacrificed for sins. Death was our desert, for we had fallen under the divine curse because of sin. When the Savior of all undertook the responsibility, he transferred to himself what was due to us and laid down his life, that we might be sent away from death and destruction.” (excerpt from COMMENTARY ON LUKE, HOMILY 53)