from the annals of history unto our current day
Meditations for the Holy Season of Lent
by a Member of the Society of Jesus
Meditation VII - Tuesday
On the the Passion of Our Lord in General II
1st Point. Jesus is the victim of all time and of all men; the victim of sinners and of the just. As he has loaded himself with all our crimes, he has crowned himself with all our sufferings! As there are none of his creatures whom he has not loved, there are none for whom he has not suffered. But he suffered principally for myself, as he bestows more graces on me than on others, which are the fruits of his sufferings. He has ever held me in remembrance, and I never think of him! I do not love him, or desire to suffer for his sake.
2nd Point. Why did Jesus die? Why did he desire the unspeakable anguish and misery that he endured? Alas! he died to return to me the life which I lost through sin; he rendered himself miserable to secure for me an eternal felicity; he delivered himself to the power of his enemies to deliver me from mine! He did not question the judgment of Pilate, he did not work miracles as he might have done, to deliver himself from their hands. He was crucified throughout his life. His heart was transfixed to the cross with his body. The greatest of all his sufferings was in not suffering; it was his chief desire to be baptized in his own blood, to drain the chalice of his passion, and die.
Oh, sweetest Jesus! thou wert not displeased with thy enemies for doing that which thou didst so much desire, and which enabled thee to suffer without measure. It was only their sins and malice which diminished thy satisfaction, and added to thy griefs. The torments which they inflicted on thee cannot be surpassed in cruelty, nor could they make thee suffer more. They loaded thee with opprobriums and ignominy, and treated thee as the most miserable of all slaves, and the most abandoned of all men. Couldst thou have suffered more than thou didst suffer, or die in more cruel agonies than thou didst?
3rd Point. And I avoid all suffering and mortification, and would even escape death. I wish to live surrounded by delights and enjoyments, when, if justice were awarded me, I should at this moment be suffering all the pains of hell. Where is it that I do not find examples of thy goodness and tender mercy? Where is it that I do not discover my own malice and presumption? Where is it that my ingratitude is not apparent?
WORDS OF SCRIPTURE
"For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead corporally." - Colossians, ii.
"And Christ died for all." - 2 Corinthians, v.
"Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us." - Galatians, i.
"And I have a baptism, wherewith I am to be baptized: and how I am straitened until it is accomplished?" - St. Luke, xii.
"From the sole of his foot to the top of his head, there is no soundness therein: wounds and bruises and swelling sores: they are not bound up, nor dressed, nor fomented with oil." - Isaias, i.
Return to the Sixth Meditation . . .
Proceed to the Eighth Meditation