The Third Sunday After The Epiphany

On the Third Sunday after the Epiphany we contemplate the account in the Gospel According to Matthew of the Roman centurion who came to Christ to seek a cure for his servant and whose words caused Christ to marvel at his faith, greater than any he had found in Israel:

Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof; but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed.

Matthew 8: 8

What we see in the centurion’s faith is the union of Will and Understanding. He wants his servant to be cured and is willing to go out of his way to find a cure; he also understands where to find that cure and what is necessary – and not necessary – to implement that cure.

The arcana that governs the Third Sunday after the Epiphany is the (7) Chariot, which is attributed to Cancer and ruled by the Moon. Jupiter is exalted in Cancer. It represents the union of will and understanding and the surrender of the ego to the divine that we have already mentioned apropos the centurion who, from this perspective, takes on an archetypal role as the soldier who stands in the (7) Chariot.

From a higher perspective, the solider in the (7) Chariot is Christ himself, through whom the arm of the everlasting God reaches out to defend, or cure, us in our infirmities, dangers and necessities, as the collect for this day puts it:

The Collect

Almighty and everlasting God, mercifully look upon our infirmities, and in all our dangers and necessities stretch forth thy right hand to help and defend us; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

Book of Common Prayer

Old Testament Reading

There shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel.

Numbers 24: 17

New Testament Reading

Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee.

Matthew 8: 13

Liturgical Affirmation

Sic est omnis qui natus est ex spiritu.

Ego sum radix et genus David, stella splendida et matutina.

Pono nubem ascensum meum et ambulo super pinnas ventorum.

Such is every one that is born of the Spirit: I am the root and offspring of David, the bright and morning star. I plant my chariot upon the clouds and ride upon the wings of the wind.