ALMIGHTY God, as your blessed Son was lifted on the cross, you made this instrument of a shameful death to be for us the means of life and peace: Grant that we may always glory in the cross of Christ and gladly suffer shame and loss for the sake of our Savior; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever.
Isaiah 45:21-25; Psalm 118:19-29; Philippians 2:5-11; John 12:31-36a
The Cross is the primary visual symbol of Christianity, and with good reason! The Cross is where, as the Epistle puts it, Christ gave himself over to death so that God would highly exalt him. The Cross is where, as the Gospel puts it, Christ became the judge of the world, cast out Satan, and drew all people to himself. The Old Testament reading explains further what it means for all to be drawn to Christ at the Cross, and the Psalm declares this the “gate of the Lord” though which God’s people must enter the Kingdom. So, as the Collect prays, we seek to follow Christ and share both his suffering and his glory at the Holy Cross.