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The Reading of the Passion - The Cross of Atonement

Updated: Apr 9, 2020

During this weekend's Palm Sunday Mass (recorded Saturday in our lovely and intimate Day Chapel), Fr. Arje spoke about The Cross. Specifically, Fr. Arje talked about how The Cross (Crucifixion and death of Christ Jesus) is what wipes away our sin and frees us to a life seeking peace and justice.

The Cross is according to Fr. Arje, "How Jesus saved us. How Jesus became one of us...Jesus, in His sufferings, felt like one of us...He felt real pain...Jesus knows what we go through...Jesus knows our heart aches and our pains." Fr. Arje is saying, in effect, that Jesus, not just through His incarnate birth but also through The Cross, became one of us. Additionally, Fr. Arje spoke on how, "That Cross, right there, is not meant to scare us," as some kind of warning against sin, but instead, "That (it) is a symbol of our salvation...a challenge to change..." It is a reminder of for what we are saved.

The Cross is our salvation. Jesus is our Savior.

What does that mean?

The Cross of Christ Jesus is The Atonement of Sin.

Atonement: noun: atonement; plural noun: atonements

1. reparation for a wrong or injury. "she wanted to make atonement for her husband's behavior"

2. (in religious contexts) reparation or expiation for sin. "an annual ceremony of confession and atonement for sin"

3. CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY the reconciliation of God and humankind through Jesus Christ. noun: Atonement; noun: the Atonement

Origin - early 16th century (denoting unity or reconciliation, especially between God and man): from at one + -ment, influenced by medieval Latin adunamentum ‘unity’, and earlier onement from an obsolete verb one ‘to unite’.

Similar: reparation compensation recompense payment repayment redress restitution indemnity indemnification expiation penance redemption amends requital solatium

Did you get all that? Oh good. Now you understand how The Cross of Christ Jesus saves you from sin and hell. Right? No...Oh...

Nope. Doesn't make sense. I sin. He dies (horribly). I go to heaven. Hmmm...

So let's see if I can break this down for you Barney style.

First, I need to take you all the way back to The Garden of Eden. God created human man and human woman to be in perfect relationship with Him. The first premise you need to understand is that the creator of the universe, of all that is beautiful, good, true and right, made you so that He (best described in the Bible as Love) can have a relationship with you.

Sin breaks the relationship. That which we do that fails to respect God's desire subsequently breaks that relationship. Original Sin is basically the fact that ALL of us have done and will do SOMETHING that breaks that perfect relationship with God.