The Paschal Mystery

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THE PASCHAL MYSTERY
SECTION 3: GOD’S PLAN FOR SALVATION FULFILLED
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH
OF JESUS
• The events that are at the heart of the Paschal
Mystery are Jesus’ Passion, death, Resurrection, and
Ascension into Heaven.
• The body of Christ on the cross, called a corpus,
reminds us of Jesus’ death and saving action.
• On Good Friday, the church is emptied of all
ornamentation to remind us of the emptiness of the
world without God and Jesus as the followers of
Jesus felt as He hung between Earth and Heaven.
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH
OF JESUS
• Jesus’ Passion refers to specifically His agony in the
garden, His trial, and His crucifixion.
• Jesus rode in to Jerusalem on Palm Sunday on a
donkey and was welcomed as a king by the
people, who heard of His miracles and works.
• The chief priests, who were the overseers of the
Temple, plotted to kill Jesus, especially since it was
the week of Passover and Jesus was causing a
disruption by overthrowing tables of money
changers in the temple.
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH
OF JESUS
• Thursday evening Jesus celebrates the Last Supper,
which was a Passover meal, when Jesus instituted
the Holy Eucharist.
• It is at this meal that Jesus is recognized as the Lamb
of God, much like the lamb eaten at Passover
Seders.
• Jesus after goes to that Garden to pray with His
apostles, or His closest companions and believers,
but not with the usual 12 of them, but rather with 11.
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH
OF JESUS
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH
OF JESUS
• Jesus prays in the Garden and becomes the “new
Adam,” by accepting God’s will in the Garden, as
opposed to the old Adam who denied God’s will by
eating the apple.
• Satan also enters Judas and leads the temple
guards to where Jesus is and betrays God in the
Garden, as he betrayed God with Adam and Eve in
the Garden.
• Jesus is brought before the Sanhedrin, or the ruling
body of the Jewish people, and found guilt of
blasphemy when He says He is the Messiah.
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH
OF JESUS
• Since the Jewish people are under Roman rule at
the time, only a Roman governor could give the
death penalty to a criminal.
• The chief priests bring Jesus to Pontius Pilate, and
accuse Jesus of being a king and inciting a
rebellion against Rome.
• Pilate finds Jesus guilt and hands Him over to be
crucified, washing his hands clean of Jesus’ death
in some Gospel accounts.
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH
OF JESUS
• Jesus was given a purple cloak to wear and a
crown of thorns, to mock His kingship.
• He was scourged with a whip made of bone and
metal, designed to rip the skin off one’s back and
cause pain.
• This torture was used by the Roman’s to scare the
Jewish people into obedience to their laws and to
prevent rebellion.
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH
OF JESUS
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH
OF JESUS
• Jesus is then crucified on a hill called Golgotha,
which means “Place of the Skull,” with nails through
his wrists and feet.
• Crucifixion deaths usually took days to complete
with death due to not being able to breathe.
• Jesus dies within six hours, probably due to the fact
that He lost so much blood from the scourging.
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH
OF JESUS
• An eclipse and an earthquake accompany Jesus’
death, as well as the veil of the temple tearing in
two pieces, which separates the Holy of Holies from
the rest of the temple.
• The tearing of the temple veil shows us that now,
through Jesus, all people have access to God, and
not just the elite high priests, who were the only
ones allowed behind the veil.
• Jesus’ body was not left on the cross like others, but
was taken down and buried in a tomb.
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH
OF JESUS
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH OF
JESUS
• Both the Jewish and Roman leaders wanted Jesus
dead.
• The Jewish leaders wanted Jesus dead because
Jesus challenged their authority with the common
people numerous times.
• However, Jesus could not be put to death because
of that, so they accused Jesus of blaspheming and
saying He had powers, such as to forgive sins, that
only God could possess.
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH OF
JESUS
• Pontius Pilate, the procurator, or governor, had an
allegiance to send tax money back to Rome from
the area he controlled.
• He set up puppet rulers under him, like King Herod,
to keep the Jewish people in check with one of
their own people.
• Jesus was crucified by Pontius Pilate because he
was a threat to the peace in Jerusalem, according
to the high priests.
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH OF
JESUS
• Jesus’ death is described in three metaphors in
different letters of the New Testament:
• Jesus, the Suffering Servant
• Jesus, the Paschal Lamb
• Jesus, the Ransom for Many
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH OF
JESUS
• Jesus, the suffering servant, who washed the feet of
the apostles at the Last Supper, serves us salvation
by his death, teaching us that it is through service to
others that we imitate him.
• Jesus, the paschal lamb, was killed at the same
time the lambs were being slaughtered in the
temple for the Jewish Passover Meal. Paschal
literally means Passover.
• Jesus, the ransom for many, pays the price for our
sins to deliver us from death by His death.
PART 1: THE SUFFERING AND DEATH OF
JESUS
• God allowed His only Son to die for us because it
was in this victory over death that Satan was
defeated.
• Satan, in the Garden of Eden, brought sin and
death to the world. Jesus, through His death, ended
the reign of sin and reunited us to God.
• Jesus was not forced by the Father either; Jesus
freely accepted the paschal mystery so as to
redeem you and me from our own death.
PART 2: THE RESURRECTION AND
ASCENSION OF JESUS
PART 2: THE RESURRECTION AND
ASCENSION OF JESUS
• The Resurrection and Incarnation are closely related
in the sense that the Resurrection proved that Jesus
was truly man and truly God, the only human to be
raised from the dead, body and soul.
• First women, then men, go to the tomb of Jesus.
• An angel tells the women Jesus has been raised
from the dead.
• Jesus appears to Mary Magdalene.
• Jesus then appears to the apostles and other
disciples.
PART 2: THE RESURRECTION AND
ASCENSION OF JESUS
• We can believe the Resurrection to be a historical
event because:
• The New Testament text can be traced backed centuries to
Jesus’ time and the early beginnings of the Church
• Early Christians preached this core belief of the faith and it is
spoken of throughout the New Testament
• The tomb was empty and the apostles, who could have
stolen the body to make it appear Jesus was raised, died for
their faith in the Resurrection, so why would they die for a
lie?
• The apostles changed from sad and distraught after Jesus’
death to all of a sudden preaching that Jesus was raised;
their change in attitude to even face death for their faith is
testimony itself to the Resurrection of Christ.
PART 2: THE RESURRECTION AND
ASCENSION OF JESUS
• The Resurrected body of Jesus was similar, yet not
the same to what He looked like before.
• People did not recognize him at first, but then they
did, such as when He broke bread with them and
ate.
• Gnosticism is a movement that teaches only the
elite are exposed to secret knowledge that brings
about salvation (this is heretical).
• Gnostics feel the soul is good and the body bad, so
they said there was no bodily Resurrection of Christ.
PART 2: THE RESURRECTION AND
ASCENSION OF JESUS
• Jesus appeared, body and spirit, to over 500
believers, making this an objective event, and not
subjective.
• St. Paul says that if we deny Christ’s Resurrection,
than we deny our own future resurrection.
• St. Paul says our seeds are like bodies. A seed must
be buried, like our bodies when we die. However,
like the Resurrection, from our bodies something
new comes forth, transformed, that looks nothing
like the seed, and that is our own resurrection.
PART 2: THE RESURRECTION AND
ASCENSION OF JESUS
• In the Resurrection, the following truths are
revealed:
• Jesus is the true Son of God, who was raised by His Father as
the first fruit of our own resurrection
• All Jesus’ teachings are true, because in the Resurrection of
Christ, we see Christ’s true divine nature
PART 2: THE RESURRECTION AND
ASCENSION OF JESUS
• Jesus death liberated us from sin; His Resurrection
opens up the gates for us to eternal life with Him in
Heaven.
• Exegesis is the study and interpretation of divine
Scripture.
• Jesus, before ascending to Heaven, taught his
disciples proper exegesis of Scripture in relation to
His own life, death, and Resurrection and then
commissioned them to make disciples of all the
world.
PART 2: THE RESURRECTION AND
ASCENSION OF JESUS
• After Jesus died, He descended into Hell to save all
those who died before he did who were righteous
in their life.
• Sheol is the Hebrew word for Hell, which is the place
where God is absent.
• Heaven was closed after Adam and Eve fell from
the Garden, so all who died after them and before
Christ went to Sheol, until Jesus went there after His
own death and brought them to Heaven.
PART 2: THE RESURRECTION AND
ASCENSION OF JESUS
• Christ ascended into Heaven forty days after His
Resurrection.
• The Ascension is when Christ took His seat at the
right hand of the Father in Heaven to receive
eternal glory.
• It is an event that cannot be described in human
language since Christ left this world and went into
another, a world that we cannot see, yet believe in.
PART 2: THE RESURRECTION AND
ASCENSION OF JESUS
• In the Incarnation, God came down from Heaven
and became man.
• In the Ascension, God left this human world and
went back to Heaven, but He took His human body
with Him, meaning Jesus is true God and true Man
for all eternity.
• Jesus’ Ascension implies three things:
• Jesus Christ has authority over Heaven, Earth, and Hell
• All humanity has the possibility to get into Heaven
• Jesus is more present to us now in Heaven than on Earth
PART 2: THE RESURRECTION AND
ASCENSION OF JESUS
• Jesus sent out His Holy Spirit to guide the Church on
its mission throughout history, linking forever the Son
and the Spirit as one.
• Whether the Son is, there is the Spirit, and the Spirit,
the Son.
• Jesus is no longer limited to time and space as He
was on Earth; through His Ascension, he is with all of
us always, even if we cannot understand how, in
the Holy Eucharist, in Scripture, in prayer, and right
next to you and me now.
PART 3: REDEEMED BY CHRIST:
OUR ETERNAL DESTINY
PART 3: REDEEMED BY CHRIST:
OUR ETERNAL DESTINY
• Saint Augustine said that in the Paschal Mystery,
Christ saved us from something and saved us for
something…
• Christ saved us from sin and its consequences,
which are:
• Guilt and shame caused by sin
• Loneliness, despair, and the feeling of not being loved from
knowing we did something wrong
• Addictions and attachments to things that may fill the void
when we did something wrong and lost something
• Death
PART 3: REDEEMED BY CHRIST:
OUR ETERNAL DESTINY
• We should not focus primarily on what Jesus saved
us from, for He saved us for more important things.
• Jesus saved us for:
• Forgiveness and healing of venial, or minor sins and from
mortal, or serious, sins
• Freedom from fear of punishment for sins
• Joy
• Loving communion with God so we can see the beatific
vision, or a direct encounter with God
• Eternal life
PART 3: REDEEMED BY CHRIST:
OUR ETERNAL DESTINY
• All salvation comes from Jesus, who is the head, to
us, who is His body.
• In Baptism, original sin is wiped away and we
become a new creation in God and for God.
• Even so, temptation and weakness of control
surrounds us, and we sin, can concupiscence.
• For that reason, we are in an in-between state,
between Heavenly glory and original sin.
PART 3: REDEEMED BY CHRIST:
OUR ETERNAL DESTINY
• At Baptism, we receive sanctifying grace to help us
along the journey to Heaven that makes us holy
and strive to achieve theological virtues, which are
faith, hope, and love.
• Theological virtues allow us to know God and unite
our minds with His.
• The Sacraments aid us on our way to eternal glory in
Heaven.
PART 3: REDEEMED BY CHRIST:
OUR ETERNAL DESTINY
• We are judged by others all the time on how we
look, what we wear, etc.
• However, the only judgment that we should be
concerned about is the final judgment God makes
of our lives.
• We all will face two judgments, which are:
• Our own particular judgment
• The final judgment
PART 3: REDEEMED BY CHRIST:
OUR ETERNAL DESTINY
• Christ’s second coming, also know as Parousia, is
the beginning of the Final Judgment.
• Those who accepted God’s grace and acted as
He taught will receive His kingdom, and those who
acted otherwise will be turned away.
• The Shepherd, Jesus, will separate the goats from
the lambs, and the lambs He will take with Him, and
the rams sent to eternal damnation.
• Those called to Heaven will be transformed, like the
Resurrection, and be united in Christ.
PART 3: REDEEMED BY CHRIST:
OUR ETERNAL DESTINY
• Christ does not want us to fear the Final Judgment,
nor the end of time.
• It could happen tomorrow, next year, in 100 years,
or right now.
• No one except God knows when the Son of Man
will return, seated in the clouds of Heaven.
• Death is not the end; it is the start of a new and
glorious beginning with God, our Creator, who will
call us all home one day.
PART 3: REDEEMED BY CHRIST:
OUR ETERNAL DESTINY
• Heaven is a state of eternal union with God in which
one experiences complete happiness and
satisfaction of the deepest human longings.
• Heaven is not bound by time or space, and neither
is Hell, like we think of them as one is up, the other is
down.
• Hell is the eternal punishment of separation from
God, reserved for those who die in mortal sin and
do not repent, thus rejecting God freely at the end
of their lives.
PART 3: REDEEMED BY CHRIST:
OUR ETERNAL DESTINY
• The principal torture of Hell is not burning alive as in
popular culture; it is being totally separated from
God.
• Purgatory is a state of final penance and
purification which one may need after death
before going into Heaven.
• Souls go to purgatory when they are neither a
perfect saint or a perfect sinner; yet once the soul is
purified, it will enter Heaven.
PART 3: REDEEMED BY CHRIST:
OUR ETERNAL DESTINY
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