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Lindemann on Tuesday in Holy Week

by revalkorn ~ April 14th, 2011

Just in case . . .

TUESDAY IN HOLY WEEK

The Introit. “God forbid that I should glory save in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. In Him is salvation, life, and resurrection from the dead. By Him we are redeemed and set at liberty. God be merciful unto us and bless us, and cause His face to shine upon us.”

The Introits for this and the following days in Holy Week point definitely to the Cross and its significance. They are unusual in that they contain passages from the New Testament and verses which are liturgical interpolations, not actually from Scripture but thoroughly Scriptural in tone. On this day the first verse of the Antiphon is a passage from the New Testament (Gal. 6:14). The second is Scriptural but not Scripture, an example of what is known as “farsing.” Webster defines this term: “In some English churches before the Reformation, an explanation or paraphrase in English of the text of the epistle read in Latin.”

The Collect. “Almighty and everlasting God, grant us grace so to pass through this holy time of our Lord’s Passion that we may obtain the pardon of our sins; through the same Jesus Christ,” etc.

This prayer turns our hearts to the true use of these hours, the most fruitful use, contemplation. This means quiet, devout meditation. From it springs realization, one finds one’s true place, meets one’s self face to face at every turn, reads one’s character, one’s vast shortcomings, one’s all-hungering needs. Then, if contemplation has borne its fruit, comes consecration. The Introit calls it glorying in our Lord’s Cross. The Collect tells us what we find. Not by merit or discovery but in the fullness of communion with our dear Lord we find what it means when the heart knows the forgiveness of sin.

The Epistle (Jer. 11:18-20) is one of this prophet’s Messianic prophecies. He speaks of the “gentle lamb led to the slaughter” and of our Lord’s utter destruction as plotted by His enemies, “that His name be remembered no more.” What a contrast when the Introit has the Church glory in the very thing that was to be the means of her Lord’s destruction!

The Gradual. “As for me, my clothing was sackcloth, I humbled my soul with fasting, and my prayer returned into mine own bosom. Plead my cause, O Lord, with them that strive with me. Take hold of shield and buckler, and stand up for mine help.”

The Proper Sentence. “Christ hath humbled Himself and become obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”

The Gospel (John 12:24-43) or the Passion History. The Holy Gospel is a continuation of the narrative so abruptly ended on Monday. It begins with our Lord’s little parable concerning His death, “a grain of wheat.” “If it dies, it bears much fruit.” It also records events that occurred on this day of the Paschal week. His prayer, “Father, glorify Thy name,” and the divine voice of confirmation and inspiration that instantly followed seem to be so closely connected with our Lords’ public warning that they together could be the last word of opportunity to the fickle and rejecting people. What conscious majesty, success, victory are in His words, even though He sees the Cross! The Evangelist’s summary concludes the Holy Gospel. He points to the fulfillment of prophecy and the reason why many who believed did not confess Him: “They loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.” Note the Introit: “Far be it from me to glory except in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

The Proper Preface. “Who on the tree of the cross didst give salvation unto mankind that, whence death arose, thence life also might rise again; and that he who by a tree once overcame likewise by a tree be overcome, through Christ, our Lord, through whom,” etc.

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