(14 April 2014, 30 March2014)
ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who, of your tender love towards mankind, has sent your Son, our Savior Jesus Christ, to take upon him our flesh, and to suffer death upon the cross, that all mankind should follow the example of his great humility; Mercifully grant, that we may both follow the example of his patience, and also be made partakers of his resurrection; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord.
ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who hates nothing that you have made and forgives the sins of all them that are penitent: Create and make in us new and contrite hearts, that we, worthily lamenting our sins, and acknowledging our wretchedness, may obtain of you, the God of all mercy, perfect remission and forgiveness; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Isaiah 63:1-19; Psalm 55:1-8; Galatians 6:1-11; Mark 14:1-72
Today we are shown a lot of contrasts. The woman at Bethany who anointed Jesus for burial honored him while Judas betrayed him. Peter’s resolution to remain faithful contrasts with his triple denial of Christ. In the garden, only Jesus could stay awake in prayer. And that’s the crux of it: in the final analysis, only Jesus is perfectly faithful. The same contrast of God’s faithfulness versus his peoples’ unfaithfulness shows up in the Old Testament reading. And we, likewise, recognize our own sinful plight! And so we cry out to God for help in the Psalm and are encouraged to pursue a life of faith, thus sowing in the Spirit for eternal life, as the Epistle puts it.