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The Forward Day by Day Meditation for May 23, 2015

We post a Forward Day by Day Meditation for every day of the year - and we invite you to consider them and talk about them here. If you'd like to comment, please register for an account at Facebook. By checking the "Post to Facebook" box when commenting, you'll be able to find and quickly link back to this page from your Facebook account. You can also find the past week's Meditations in the box at right (or below, for mobile users), or search for previous entries on the Archives page.

SATURDAY, May 23

Hebrews 9:12 Christ entered once for all into the Holy Place, not with the blood of goats and calves, but with his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption.

Talk about the “blood of Jesus” has long baffled me. Blood of Jesus imagery is central to the Holy Eucharist. A good portion of Christian devotional literature and hymnody center on it. A popular theory of the Atonement is based on it. And the Epistle to the Hebrews makes much of it, tying it to the sacrificial system of the Jerusalem temple.

But blood of Jesus talk still confounds me. The problem is probably in my mind, but that doesn’t make it any less perplexing for me. I just don’t get it. Except in one respect—bleeding hurts.

I know what it is to bleed—to hurt, to be confronted by my own mortality in stark crimson tones. When I am able to understand that Jesus bleeds for me, I don’t have to comprehend the ins and outs of why he bleeds for me. It is enough for me to know that when I gaze upon his bloody brow and his wounded side, I see how much Jesus loves me. “See from his head, his hands, his feet,
sorrow and love flow mingled down!
Did e’er such love and sorrow meet,
or thorns compose so rich a crown?” (Isaac Watts, The Hymnal 1982, #474)

PRAY for the Diocese of Northern Indiana (Province V, The Episcopal Church)

Ps 107:33-43, 108:1-6(7-13); Ezekiel 43:1-12; Hebrews 9:1-14; Luke 11:14-23

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