Dean’s Lent Addresses 2018: The Passion according to St John – Crucified for us

On this page you can find details of the final of the Dean of Melbourne’s Lent Addresses 2018, The Passion according to St John: Crucified for us. You can find the first Lent Address here, the second address here, the third here, and the fourth here, and the fifth here.

For Christians, Lent is a period of renewal and growth.

In this address, the Dean of Melbourne, the Very Revd Dr Andreas Loewe, reflects on Jesus’s death on the cross as told in the Passion of St John, and on the German composer Johann Sebastian Bach’s invitation, in a chorale, to become ourselves bearers of that cross by placing it in our hearts.

You can read the reading Dean Andreas reflects on in his talk, and you can watch his talk.

When you have done so, you may wish to use the questions for group reflection our congregations are using for their Lent discussion.

Reading for the Sixth Sunday in Lent:

You first may wish to read the Bible reading on which this talk is based John 19.16-30.

Dean’s Address:

Questions for Group Discussion or Individual Reflection:

Reflecting on Dean Andreas’s sermon and our readings today:

  • For John, the death of Jesus takes place at the same time as the lambs for the Passover sacrifice are offered. What does John say about the sacrifice of Jesus? What may it mean for Jesus to be ‘the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world’?
  • Throughout this trial and execution, Pilate sought to provoke the religious authorities, this time by commissioning an inscription declaring Jesus ‘the King of the Jews’. In what way may Jesus be said the King of the Jews, and what does his kingdom look like?
  • On the cross, Jesus entrusts his mother to the care of his cousin and disciple John. How can we become Jesus’ family?
  • Jesus dies with the words, ‘it is finished’ on his lips. What is Jesus’ accomplishment, and how has Jesus completed what he set out to do? How can we show the same obedience and trust to God’s purposes in the works God gives us to do?
  • In Johann Sebastian Bach’s chorale heard at the end of the sermon, he invites us to place the cross of Jesus in our hearts. What would it look like for us to open our hearts to Jesus, and to become a living sanctuary of the cross? What qualities come to mind, when you think about opening your heart to Christ? What things might you need to take up, or let go off in this process?

Dean Andreas’s invitation for the Week ahead:

In the week ahead I invite you to open your hearts to Christ: receive him as your consolation in times of adversity and your delight in times of joy, Receive him as your brother, who seeks to number all people among his family. Receive him as your judge, who for us ‘so charitable, has bled himself to death’. Make place in your hearts for his cross as a sign of your confidence, knowing that he who hands over his life to the Father has conquered death, and that he who takes up his life again, gifts all those who receive him a share in the life that is forever.

Prayer at the end of your study time:

Lord Jesus Christ,
you humbled yourself in taking the form of a servant,
and in obedience died on the cross for our salvation:
give us the mind to follow you
and to proclaim you as Lord and King,
to the glory of God the Father. Amen.

© The Dean and Chapter of St Paul’s Cathedral Melbourne, 2018

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