PASSION


The sun lifted his arm to hide his reddened face,
The winds ceased and the earth jolted in confusion;
The universe blackened; history was blotted out.

The One who held this vast universe by His power
Now hung motionless in body on the Cross --
That cursed pole obliterated by His crushed frame.

Puny little powers had wielded powerless hammers
Driving nails, lifting Him up for all eyes to see
What salvation God ordained through this cursed tree.

Two thieves for company; few friends, more foes
Waited, as time fled, to watch this end;
Time did end; history choked.

The quivers quivered as bitter arrows were disengaged;
Sin rattled against that Love immutable and true:
O Mockery, you had never so hatefully grimaced
Than when He prayed,
“Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do!”

One sinner cursed, the other his sins confessed
And sought a hope this world never knew;
Glory shone from God’s battered face,
As to him He said,
“Verily, you’ll be with Me in paradise today, I say to you!”

Then, from those torn lips flowed words of sealing
A woman whose breast He leaned on
To the disciple that leaned on His:
“Woman, behold your son!”
“Son, behold your mother!”

And, darkness covered the land for hours three;
Chronicles and almanacs wriggled in disbelief;
Time dropped her hands all mystified,
As He cried,
“My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”

What pride mars the hearts of sinful mortals,
Their evil enflamed by their wishful desires!
One blinded man whispered, “He calls for Elijah!”
Another mocked, “Now, he needs help.”
We plunder our lives for goods of godless pleasure,
We plummet our souls into hell’s horrendous grave;
Then, we look at the Crucified Savior,
And whisper to ourselves, “He needs help!”

The agony was over, the agony released;
He knew it was over and felt the peace;
Then, He said, “I thirst!”
Lord, I was the cause and the reason why You thirsted.
The liquid that most composes this earthly sheath
Was drained from Your veins to wipe my shame;
You thirsted in order that I may never thirst again!

They lifted to You that venomous vinegar
To burn Your lips, to blunt Your pain.
You turned Your Holy face in refusal,
Your thirst was quenched when You quenched my shame.

Then, He cried “It is finished;”
The Law and the Prophets brought to an end in Him.
One Act of Jesus Christ of Nazareth
Nullified religion, culture, and every human whim.
The wisdom of the wise in their wallets,
The power of princes in their pockets,
Let forever be confined:
He’s done with these, I’m done as well;
I’m crucified to the world through Him.
The old is blotted out, history has changed,
The transgressor is no more; see, there this saint!
Man no longer has works; these are acts of the Cross,
From where alone flows each disciple’s works.

What cry now rends the heavens and the earth!
What voice echoes through the corridors of space!
“Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit!”
The only Obedient Son died to live again!

The veil of the temple was torn asunder,
The earth quaked and the rocks were split;
His material case broke open; the path of heaven was paved.

The centurion fell to his knees in wonder,
The crowd beat their breasts and cried;
Silence! God hangs motionless, the penalty is paid.

As the sacrificial lamb brought to the altar,
As the sparrow over running waters slain,
He poured out His boundless love and drenched me with grace.

Lord, what is passion and how much zeal’s enough?
Your Passion displayed passionately the ultimacy of love.
The world’s fully obliterated, it’s only You all now!


© Domenic Marbaniang, Thursday, April 1, 2010

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