In today’s Gospel reading, Jesus tells the Jews:
YE are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world.
I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins. […]
WHEN ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.
And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him.
As he spake these words, many believed on him.
Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
John 8:23-24, 28-32. From today’s Gospel reading.
The Akathist to the Holy Cross (for September 14) shows how contemplating the light-bearing Cross with the eye of the heart brings us up from earth to heaven’s height.
It also shows how the Cross fulfilled Israel’s history and Covenant.
THE Cross of the Lord became a ladder as lofty as heaven, leading up all from earth that they might always dwell together with the choirs of Angels, abandoning things present as though they were not, and singing: Alleluia!
SHINING as a light upon all in Hades, O Savior you enlightened them who were in darkness, and the gate-keepers of Hades, not enduring your coming, fell down as dead, but they who were delivered now behold the Cross and cry:
REJOICE, resurrection of the dead;
Rejoice, consolation of those that mourn;
Rejoice, despoiling of the treasuries of Hades;
Rejoice, enjoyment of the Paradise of delight;
Rejoice, rod that drowned the Egyptian army;
Rejoice, you who watered the Israelite people;
Rejoice, living Wood, the Thief’s salvation;
Rejoice, fragrant rose, sweet scent of the godly;
Rejoice, food of the hungry in spirit;
Rejoice, God’s seal that men have received;
Rejoice, O Cross, doorway to the divine mysteries;
Rejoice, from which divine streams pour forth;
Rejoice, O Wood most blessed.
WHEN Moses was about to deliver his much-troubled race from the Egyptians you, O Cross, were given to him as a rod, but you were made known to him also as a symbol of God wherefore, amazed at your sovereign might, O Cross, he cried: Alleluia!
Salutations to the Holy Cross (for September 14). Translation from the Akathists blog.