The Exaltation of the Holy Cross – Feast
Book of Numbers 21:4-9.
From Mount Hor they set out on the Red Sea road, to by-pass the land of Edom. But with their patience worn out by the journey,
the people complained against God and Moses, “Why have you brought us up from Egypt to die in this desert, where there is no food or water? We are disgusted with this wretched food!”
In punishment the LORD sent among the people saraph serpents, which bit the people so that many of them died.
Then the people came to Moses and said, “We have sinned in complaining against the LORD and you. Pray the LORD to take the serpents from us.” So Moses prayed for the people,
and the LORD said to Moses, “Make a saraph and mount it on a pole, and if anyone who has been bitten looks at it, he will recover.”
Moses accordingly made a bronze serpent and mounted it on a pole, and whenever anyone who had been bitten by a serpent looked at the bronze serpent, he recovered.
A maskil of Asaph. Attend, my people, to my teaching; listen to the words of my mouth.
I will open my mouth in story, drawing lessons from of old.
When he slew them, they began to seek him; they again inquired of their God.
They remembered that God was their rock, God Most High, their redeemer.
But they deceived him with their mouths, lied to him with their tongues.
Their hearts were not constant toward him; they were not faithful to his covenant.
But God is merciful and forgave their sin; he did not utterly destroy them. Time and again he turned back his anger, unwilling to unleash all his rage.
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 3:13-17.
No one has gone up to heaven except the one who has come down from heaven, the Son of Man.
And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up,
so that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.”
For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.
For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him.
Commentary of the day : Pope Benedict XVI
“He gave himself up to death and by his resurrection he destroyed death and restored life” (Eucharistic Prayer IV)