The Jazz Theologian

Jesuit Christians daily practice the Prayer of Examen.  It is a simple form of prayer that seeks to develop receptiveness to the call of God for the purpose of a response.

We need to "examen" the cross not "examine" the cross.  Jesus’ death was a supreme act of love–a love supreme, that is.  "Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends."

Coltranes stages provide a good pattern for cross-examEnation.

Stage 1–Acknowledgement:  We need to face the facts about the cross.  What was God doing on the cross?  The basic classical answers are

  • Substitution:  Jesus was absorbing our pain by taking our place.
  • Reconciliation:  Jesus was making peace.
  • Christos Victor:  Jesus was securing victory over sin, darkness and death.
  • Redemption:  Jesus was paying the price for our freedom
  • Submission:  Jesus was submitting to the will of his father

Resolution is next…

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