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Wednesday of Holy Week

April 4, 2012


Blessed Spy Wednesday!

Spy Wednesday is a popular term, not a liturgical one,
yet it describes Judas’ new position among the disciples.
Today he becomes a spy among the Twelve, an informer for the enemy,
waiting for the opportune moment to hand over his Lord
to condemnation and death.

O God, who willed Your Son to submit for our sake
to the yoke of the Cross,
so that You might drive from us the power of the enemy,
grant us, Your servants, to attain the grace of the resurrection.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son,
who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever. Amen.
(Opening Prayer for today’s Mass)

Isaiah 50:4-9 (God’s Suffering Servant will not be deterred)
Psalm 69:8-10, 21-22, 31, 33-34 “Lord, in Your great love, answer me.”
+Matthew 26:14-25 (Judas’ first betrayal and Jesus’ subtle invitation to repentance)

Is He your Rabbi or your Lord?

Twelve men around the table heard:

Amen I say to you,
one of you is about to betray me
-Matthew 26:21

Eleven called Him “Lord”:

Surely it is not I, Lord?
-Matthew 26:22

One ducked divinity:

Surely it is not I, Rabbi?
-Matthew 26:25

He was the one
who had betrayed
his sacred trust,
had sold his soul
for silver dust:
the list price of a slave
(see Matthew 26:15, Exodus 21:32).

The others were not all that brave.
They could not say with Christ:

I have not rebelled,
have not turned back.
I gave My back to those who beat Me,
My cheeks to those who plucked My beard;
My face I did not shield from buffets and spitting
-Isaiah 50:5, 6

When persecution burst the night
they all took flight
(see Matthew 26:56)

But they came back–
to God.

He healed their souls,
forgave their sin,
and breathed out peace.

Peace be with you!
-John 20:21

This is the sacrament
they have passed down
to our own day
where God applies the sacrifice
of His own Blood
through consecrated hands
to purge our sins.

Receive the Holy Spirit;
to any whose sins you forgive,
those sins will be forgiven
-John 20:22-23

Judas came back–
to men.

Then Judas…returned the thirty pieces of silver
to the chief priests and elders
-Matthew 27:3

They can’t forgive.
Their sacrifice
does not suffice.

it is impossible
for the blood of bulls and goats
to take away sins
-Hebrews 10:4

His guilt remained.
There is no peace in that.

Is Jesus Lord–God–to you or just one leader among many?
For what price do you sell your soul?
To what or whom do you look for peace?

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