Palm Sunday

pexels-photo-796656.jpegLiturgy of the Palms (March 25, 2018)

As Jesus and his disciples approached Jerusalem, they came to the towns of Bethphage and Bethany on the Mount of Olives. Jesus sent two of them on ahead. “Go into that village over there,” he told them. “As soon as you enter it, you will see a young donkey tied there that no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here. If anyone asks, ‘What are you doing?’ just say, ‘The Lord needs it and will return it soon.’”

The two disciples left and found the colt standing in the street, tied outside the front door. As they were untying it, some bystanders demanded, “What are you doing, untying that colt?” They said what Jesus had told them to say, and they were permitted to take it. Then they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their garments over it, and he sat on it.

Many in the crowd spread their garments on the road ahead of him, and others spread leafy branches they had cut in the fields. Jesus was in the center of the procession, and the people all around him were shouting,

“Praise God!
    Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the Lord!
Blessings on the coming Kingdom of our ancestor David!
    Praise God in highest heaven!”

So Jesus came to Jerusalem and went into the Temple. After looking around carefully at everything, he left because it was late in the afternoon. Then he returned to Bethany with the twelve disciples.

Mark 11:1-11 New Living Translation (NLT)

The Beginning of the End

This week begins Holy Week.  It is a week that we recount the events that happen before the crucifixion of Jesus.  This linchpin week begins with Jesus’ entrance into Jerusalem.  The gospel of Mark recounts the events.  The people of Israel were looking for a king and in this moment, they were ready to crown Jesus the king.  As we begin this week, I want us to look at what the people said:

“Praise God!
    Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the Lord!
Blessings on the coming Kingdom of our ancestor David!
    Praise God in highest heaven!”

The Greek here uses the word Hosanna. We often use the phrase as a word of praise, thinking that it is praise to God. The reality is that it is a cry to God.  The people who saw Jesus coming into Jerusalem, were looking for God to save them.  The word hosanna means “save now.”  Jesus was coming to save them, but not in the way they thought.  They thought Jesus was coming to establish his throne – right there – right then.  Little did they know the events that would happen over the week.  Little did they know that Jesus was coming to save them, but it wasn’t the way that they had it in their minds.  Yes, on Sunday we will celebrate Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem to save his people from their sins.  Jesus would ride on a donkey into the streets on Sunday…and the words that the people shouted would come true…(to be continued….)

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