O mystifying murder! O mystifying injustice!
The master is obscured by his body exposed,
and is not held worthy of a veil to shield him from view.
For this reason the great lights turned away,
And the day was turned to darkness;
To hide the one denuded on the tree,
Obscuring not the body of the Lord but human eyes.
For when the people did not tremble, the earth shook.
When the people did not fear, the heavens were afraid.
When the people did not rend their garments, the angel rent his own.
When the people did not lament, the Lord thundered from heaven,
And the most high gave voice ...
The Lord clothed himself with humanity,
And with suffering on behalf of the suffering one,
And bound on behalf of the one constrained,
And judged on behalf of the one convicted,
And buried on behalf of the one entombed,
Rose from the dead and cried out aloud:
"Who takes issue with me? Let him stand before me.
I set free the condemned.
I gave life to the dead.
I raise up the entombed.
Who will contradict me?"
"It is I," says the Christ,
"I am he who destroys death,
and triumphs over the enemy,
and crushed Hades,
and binds the strong man,
and bears humanity off of the heavenly lights."
"It is I," says the Christ.
"So come all families of people,
adulterated with sin,
and receive forgiveness of sins.
For I am your freedom.
I am the Passover of Salvation,
I am the lamb slaughtered for you,
I am your ransom,
I am your life,
I am your light,
I am your salvation,
I am your resurrection,
I am your King.
I shall raise you up by my right hand,
I will lead you to the heights of heaven,
There shall I show you the everlasting Father."
~St. Melito of Sardis, On Pascha