Scriptural Way of the Cross

The Scriptural Way of the Cross or Scriptural Stations of the Cross is a modern version of the ancient Christian devotion called the Stations of the Cross.

The versicle and response, “We adore you, O Christ,…” is from the traditional devotions for the Stations of the Cross.

The prayers that follow each scriptural devotion are newly written for A Collection of Prayers, based on the traditional response for after each devotion, “Lord Jesus, help us walk in your steps.”

Except where noted otherwise, Scripture is taken from The Holy Bible: Evangelical Heritage Version, www.wartburgproject.org.

All art is by James Tissot.

The readings, prayers and art are available as a downlodable pdf, printable as a booklet.

First Station: Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane

File:Brooklyn Museum - You Could Not Watch One Hour With Me (Vous n'avez pu veiller une heure avec moi) - James Tissot.jpg

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane. He told his disciples, “Sit here, while I go over there and pray.” He took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and he began to be sorrowful and distressed. Then he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to the point of death. Stay here, and keep watch with me.” He went a little farther, fell on his face, and prayed. He said, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.” He came to the disciples and found them sleeping. He said to Peter, “So, were you not able to stay awake with me for one hour? Watch and pray, so that you do not enter into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Matthew 26:36–41

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps.
Keep our spirits willing,
and strengthen us when our flesh is weak;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Second Station: Jesus is Betrayed by Judas and Arrested

File:Brooklyn Museum - The Guards Falling Backwards (Les gardes tombant à la renverse) - James Tissot.jpg

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Just then, while Jesus was still speaking, Judas, one of the Twelve, arrived. A crowd was with him, armed with swords and clubs. They were from the chief priests, the experts in the law, and the elders. Now his betrayer had given them a signal, saying, “The one I kiss is the man. Arrest him and lead him away under guard.” He went right to Jesus and said, “Rabbi!” and kissed him. They laid hands on him and arrested him. Mark 14:43–46

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps,
even when we must go where we do not want to go;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Third Station: Jesus is Condemned by the Sanhedrin

File:Brooklyn Museum - The Morning Judgment (Le jugement du matin) - James Tissot.jpg

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

As soon as it was day, the council of the elders of the people met together, both the chief priests and experts in the law. They brought him into their Sanhedrin and said, “If you are the Christ, tell us.” But he said to them, “If I tell you, you will not believe, and if I ask you, you will not answer me or release me. But from now on, the Son of Man will be seated at the right hand of the power of God.” They all said, “Are you then the Son of God?” He said to them, “I am what you are saying.” Then they said, “Why do we need any more testimony? For we ourselves have heard it from his own mouth!”  Luke 22: 66-71

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps,
that we always confess you as Christ our Lord,
Son of Man and Son of God;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Fourth Station: Jesus is Denied by Peter

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Meanwhile Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard. A servant girl came to him and said, “You were also with Jesus the Galilean.” But he denied it in front of everyone, saying, “I don’t know what you’re talking about.” When Peter went out to the entryway, someone else saw him and said to those who were there, “This fellow was with Jesus of Nazareth.” Again Peter denied it with an oath and said, “I do not know the man.” After a little while those who stood by came and said to Peter, “Surely you are also one of them because even your accent gives you away.” Then he began to curse and to swear, “I do not know the man!” Just then the rooster crowed. And Peter remembered the word Jesus had spoken, “Before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times.” And he went outside and wept bitterly.  Matthew 26: 69-75

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps,
that we always remember the words you have spoken,
repent of our sins,
and cling to you;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Fifth Station: Jesus is Judged by Pontius Pilate

File:Brooklyn Museum - Jesus Before Pilate Second Interview (Jésus devant Pilate. Deuxième entretien) - James Tissot.jpg

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

As soon as it was morning, the chief priests, along with the elders, the experts in the law, and the whole Sanhedrin, reached a decision. They bound Jesus, led him away, and handed him over to Pilate. Pilate asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” He answered him, “It is as you say.” The chief priests accused him of many things. Pilate questioned him again, “Are you not going to answer anything? See how many charges they are bringing against you!” But Jesus still did not answer anything, so Pilate was amazed. Since he wanted to satisfy the crowd, Pilate released Barabbas to them. After he had Jesus flogged, he handed him over to be crucified. Mark 15: 1-5, 15

Lord Jesus, we cannot always follow in your steps,
for you went to the depths of suffering alone,
so that like Barabbas, we would be set free;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Sixth Station: Jesus is Scourged at the Pillar and Crowned with Thorns

File:Brooklyn Museum - The Scourging on the Front (La flagellation de face) - James Tissot.jpg

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Then Pilate took Jesus and had him flogged. The soldiers also twisted together a crown of thorns and placed it on his head. Then they threw a purple robe around him. They kept coming to him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” And they kept hitting him in the face.  John 19:1-3

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps.
Rule in our hearts,
as our good and gracious King;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Seventh Station: Jesus Bears the Cross

File:Brooklyn Museum - Jesus Bearing the Cross (Jésus chargé de la Croix) - James Tissot.jpg

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

When the chief priests and guards saw him, they shouted, “Crucify! Crucify!” Pilate told them, “Take him yourselves and crucify him, for I find no basis for a charge against him.” They shouted, “Away with him! Away with him! Crucify him!” Pilate said to them, “Should I crucify your king?” “We have no king but Caesar!” the chief priests answered. So then Pilate handed Jesus over to them to be crucified. So they took Jesus away. Carrying his own cross, he went out to what is called the Place of a Skull, which in Aramaic is called Golgotha.  John 19: 6, 15-17

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps.
We have no king but you;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Eighth Station: Jesus is Helped by Simon of Cyrene to Carry the Cross

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

A certain man, Simon of Cyrene (the father of Alexander and Rufus), was passing by on his way in from the country. They forced him to carry Jesus’ cross. Mark 15:21

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps.
Help us bear our crosses,
for you bore the heaviest cross for us;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Ninth Station: Jesus Meets the Women of Jerusalem

File:Brooklyn Museum - The Daughters of Jerusalem (Les filles de Jérusalem) - James Tissot.jpg

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

A large crowd of people was following him, including women who were mourning and wailing for him. Jesus turned to them and said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, stop weeping for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. Be sure of this: The days are coming when they will say, ‘Blessed are the childless women, the wombs that never gave birth, and the breasts that never nursed.’ Then they will begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us!’ and to the hills, ‘Cover us.’ For if they do these things to the green wood, what will happen to the dry?” Luke 23:27-31

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps.
Dry our tears,
until that day
when you wipe away every tear from our eyes;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Tenth Station: Jesus is Crucified

File:Brooklyn Museum - The First Nail (Le premier clou) - James Tissot.jpg

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

When they came to the place called The Skull, they crucified him there with the criminals, one on his right and the other on his left. Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” They cast lots to divide his garments among them. Luke 23:33-34

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps,
that we forgive those who have sinned against us,
because you have freely forgiven us;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Eleventh Station: Jesus Promises Paradise to the Repentant Thief

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

One of the criminals hanging there was blaspheming him, saying, “Aren’t you the Christ? Save yourself and us!” But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God, since you are under the same condemnation? We are punished justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for what we have done, but this man has done nothing wrong.” Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come in your kingdom.” Jesus said to him, “Amen I tell you: Today you will be with me in paradise.” Luke 23:39-43

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps,
that by your grace
we, too, may join you in your kingdom of Paradise
when our last hour comes;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Twelfth Station: Jesus Speaks to His Mother and the Beloved Disciple

File:Brooklyn Museum - The Death of Jesus (La mort de Jésus) - James Tissot.jpg

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Jesus’ mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene were standing near the cross. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Woman, here is your son!” Then he said to the disciple, “Here is your mother!” And from that time this disciple took her into his own home. John 19:25-27

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps.
Give us the blessed comfort of friends and family,
and always keep us near you;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Thirteenth Station: Jesus Dies on the Cross

File:Brooklyn Museum - The Sorrowful Mother (Mater Dolorosa) - James Tissot.jpg

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour, while the sun was darkened. Then the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Jesus cried out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” When he had said this, he breathed his last. Luke 23:44-46

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps,
for by your innocent suffering and death,
you have opened up the way to the Father for us;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Fourteenth Station: Jesus is Placed in the Tomb

File:Brooklyn Museum - The Holy Virgin Kisses the Face of Jesus Before He is Enshrouded on the Anointing Stone - James Tissot.jpg

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

When it was evening, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who was also a disciple of Jesus. He went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Then Pilate ordered that it be given to him. Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and laid it in his own new tomb that he had cut in the rock. He rolled a large stone over the tomb’s entrance and left. Matthew 27:57-60

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps,
for you have gone where we must all go,
to death and the grave,
all so you could rise again;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Fifteenth Station: Jesus Rises from the Dead

File:Brooklyn Museum - The Resurrection (La Résurrection) - James Tissot.jpg

We adore you, O + Christ, and we praise you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb. Suddenly, there was a great earthquake! For an angel of the Lord came down from heaven, and going to the tomb, he rolled away the stone and was sitting on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing was as white as snow. The guards were so terrified of him that they shook and became like dead men. The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid! I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here. He has risen, just as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. Go quickly and tell his disciples, ‘He has risen from the dead! And look, he is going ahead of you to Galilee. There you will see him.’ See, I have told you!” They hurried away from the tomb, with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” They approached, took hold of his feet, and worshipped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go, tell my brothers that they should go to Galilee, and there they will see me.” Matthew 28:1-10

Lord Jesus, help us follow in your steps.
Raise us up on the Last Day,
that we may follow you from death to life;
you live and reign, now and forever. Amen.

Scripture is taken from The Holy Bible: Evangelical Heritage Version

Prayers are written for A Collection of Prayers, © 2021 Paul C. Stratman

Art is by James Tissot from his Gospel Harmony Series.

See also: Scriptural Way of the Cross on Wikipedia, and an article on the website of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

See also:

Now and Forever, Now Available as Digital Download

Now and Forever: New Collects for Modern Lectionaries

Now and Forever is a prayer resource based on the Revised Common Lectionary and is adaptable to lectionaries in Lutheran Service Book, Evangelical Lutheran Worship, Christian Worship: A Lutheran Hymnal (1993) and Christian Worship: Hymnal (2021). Also usable with Episcopal and Roman Catholic Lectionaries.

The prayers, all newly composed, are written in classic collect form and find their themes in the readings for each Sunday in the lectionary. This book gives additional options for the Prayer of the Day/Opening Prayer. These prayers may also be used for concluding petitions in the Prayer of the Church (Prayers of Intercession or Prayers of the People) or may be used as closing prayers that fit thematically with the readings of the day. Pastors, lectors and worship planners may find this to be a valuable resource for prayers in the worship service.

Files are included with the prayers rearranged for use with the readings of the Historic Lectionary.

This resource is also available in book form through Amazon.com.

Download package contains prayers for every Sunday and Festival in the Revised Common Lectionary in Word (docx), PDF and Rich Text Format (rtf). There are two sets of files. One set has the prayers in sense-line (poetic) format and the other set has the prayers in paragraph format. See below for an example of one of the prayers in both sense-line and paragraph formats.

Ash Wednesday

A

(Sense-line format)

God of unfailing love,
have mercy on us.
Work godly sorrow in our hearts.
See what is unseen in us
and forgive us.
Renew and refresh us
by your Holy Spirit;
through your Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever. [47]

(Paragraph format)

God of unfailing love, have mercy on us. Work godly sorrow in our hearts. See what is unseen in us and forgive us. Renew and refresh us by your Holy Spirit; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. [47]

To preview more, see Now and Forever: Easter Sampler

Purchase and Download, $5.00

For those who have already purchased the book, enter the first word of prayer [141] as a coupon code (Look for “Got a code?” at checkout) and get the download for $1.00!

Prayers from the Evangelical-Lutheran Heritage – Christmas Sampler

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Celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation this Christmas with this collection of Prayers from the Evangelical-Lutheran Heritage – Christmas Sampler.  This collection draws on the history of the Lutheran Church from Luther to Loehe (1500s-1800s). The whole book can be purchased through Amazon.com at this link: http://amzn.to/2AXqUzi 

To preview, download this free pdf of a sampling of the Christmas prayers:

Prayers from the Ev. Lutheran Heritage – Christmas Sampler

The New Ancient Collects, Christmas Sampler

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The New Ancient Collects is a revision of the classic Ancient Collects and Other Prayers by Dr. William Bright. These treasures of the ancient Christian church have been refreshed in contemporary English, and the collection is available for purchase through Amazon.com at this link: http://amzn.to/2hFSvNR

To preview, download this free pdf of a sampling of the Christmas prayers:

The New Ancient Collects – Christmas Sampler

Christian Prayer

MockupFrom the Preface

It is said that when Martin Luther was dying, a slip of paper was found in his pocket on which he had scribbled, “Truly we are all beggars.” By definition, prayer is asking or begging. In all our abundance, we are tempted to forget that—and to forget prayer altogether.

Long ago I took a class, “The Theology and Practice of Prayer,” and a native African pastor in the class asked, “Why do you need a book to pray?” No one really needs a book to pray. We have examples of written prayers in the Old Testament with the psalms which have been called the Bible’s song and prayer book. We have the example of Jesus himself giving the Lord’s Prayer: once saying “Pray like this…” (Matthew 6:9) and another time saying, “When you pray, say ‘Our Father…” (Luke 11:2). So there is a biblical precedent for written and memorized prayer.

This book strives to bring together the best classic prayers and rites from many sources and arranges them for personal devotion. Most of the prayers are gathered from Christians of the past as a source of prayer for Christians today. Thus, the title Christian Prayer.

This prayer book can also be used for group or congregational worship. The topical prayers can be used as intercessions in corporate worship. The confessions and absolutions and the litanies can be read alone, but they are printed so they can be used with a leader and group.

This book contains texts or basic outlines for the main services of the church, the Divine Service, and Matins and Vespers, along with Prime and Compline modified from our publication The Antiphonary of Bangor and The Divine Offices of Bangor.

The topical prayers drew from many sources, all updated in language and edited for consistency.

Seasonal Devotions and Home Liturgies are short rites can be used by families or small groups to observe days and seasons that may not always be celebrated in corporate worship, and some that may establish new traditions in the home. Lighting of an Advent Wreath, Blessing of a Nativity Scene, Chalking the Door for Epiphany, Ash Wednesday, Days of Holy Week, Easter Eve and All Saints Day. As this book is being prepared, (April and May of 2020) we are being made painfully aware of the need for worship materials in the home.

Christian Prayer: Sampler includes the Preface, Table of Contents, Morning and Evening Prayers, the first page of Prayers Derived from the Lord’s Prayer, and the sources. Download here: Christian Prayer – Sampler

Available now in paperback and for Kindle through Amazon.com. 

Christian Prayer, Banner

New from VaterUnser Books: “Through Your Mercy, O Our God…” Prayers from the Mozarabic Church

This book is a collection of prayers from the Mozarabic tradition. The Mozarabs were Christians who lived in Spain under Islamic rule. The prayers in the Mozarabic Rite are free in style and substantial in meaning. Most of the prayers also seem to be very direct in presenting gospel content. They are also very consciously biblical. Some of the Mozarabic prayers also have a definite structure. Sometimes the structure is similar to the parallelism in Hebrew psalms. Some prayers remind me of a modern bullet list. The content, structure and biblical foundation of the prayers give them a special beauty, along with deep meaning.

Available through Amazon for Kindle and in paperback.

VaterUnser Books, black on white

Did You Enjoy “Prayers from the Ancient Celtic Church”?

Did you enjoy Prayers from the Ancient Celtic Church? Here’s another part of the Celtic-Anglo Christian heritage!

From the Introduction: 

"God Be in My Head..." Prayers from Old Sarum by [Stratman, Paul]The “Sarum Rite” or “Use of Salisbury” was a variant of the Roman Rite. It was known for additional responses not in the Roman Rite and for its high ceremony. In 1078, William of Normandy appointed Osmund, a Norman nobleman, as bishop of Salisbury. As bishop, Osmund initiated some revisions to the Celtic-Anglo-Saxon Rite and the local adaptations of the Roman Rite. Scholars have theorized that the liturgical practices of Rouen in northern France inspired the Sarum liturgical books. After the liturgical reforms in Salisbury, other English dioceses issued their own books, based on the Sarum Rite.

The Sarum Rite had a wealth of richly worded prayers that have influenced Christian worship ever since. Many prayers from the Sarum Rite were used in the Book of Common Prayer. This book gathers prayers from the original Sarum Missals, Breviaries and Psalters and presents them in a single collection in contemporary liturgical English, and may be useful in public or private devotions.

NOTE: This volume also contains all the psalm prayers from the book Psalm Prayers from Sarum.

Available in paperback and for Kindle from Amazon.com.

“God Be in My Head…” Prayers from Old Sarum

"God Be in My Head..." Prayers from Old Sarum by [Stratman, Paul]The Sarum Rite, also called the Use of Salisbury, was a variation of the Roman Rite developed in the 1100s that was known to be high in ceremony. It also had a wealth of richly worded prayers that have influenced Christian worship ever since. Many prayers from the Sarum Rite were used in the Book of Common Prayer. This book gathers prayers from the original Sarum Missals, Breviaries and Psalters and presents them in a single collection in contemporary liturgical English, and may be useful in public or private devotions.

NOTE: This volume also contains all the psalm prayers from the book Psalm Prayers from Sarum.

Available in paperback and for Kindle from Amazon.com.

A Family Handbook of Prayer

AFHoP,Cover.pngI was contacted by Mary J. Moerbe who is a blogger interested in Lutheran writers. She also runs a Lutheran homeschool website, www.LutheranHomeschool.com. She asked if I would develop a short prayerbook with a set of classic prayers, and provide some prayers and Scriptures in other languages for homeschoolers who are teaching their children other languages.

The result is A Family Handbook of Prayer. It is provided as a free download. Its 24 pages contain morning and evening prayers, the Lord’s Prayer in several languages, table prayers, and a selection of psalms taken from the English Standard Version, some are also printed with German (Luther 1545), Latin (Vulgate) and Spanish (Reina-Valera 1995) translations.

It is formatted as a pdf, and instructions on printing as a booklet are on the inside front page (p. 2).

Download at this link: 

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For an expanded selection of family and personal prayers, see Christian Prayer.

Psalm Prayers from Sarum

Psalm Prayers from Sarum by [Stratman, Paul]Many of the psalms are prayers. In the history of Christian worship, psalms have also been the inspiration for prayers. In many traditions, after a psalm is sung or read in the service of evening prayer, a short prayer based on the psalm follows. These psalm prayers are taken from the Sarum Psalter, the book used for the Liturgy of Hours in the community of Sarum (Salisbury), England. These ancient prayers reflect on each psalm, sometimes applying the truths of the psalm, sometimes repeating the petition in the psalm, sometimes reflecting on the meaning of the psalm for the individual. This book also includes other prayers and blessings from the Sarum Liturgy of Hours.

Available for Kindle from Amazon.com. These prayers are also included in “God Be in My Head…” Prayers from Old Sarum.

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