Sunday, March 24, 2013

Palm Sunday



(Triumphant Entry-Lift High the Lord Processional by Catbird SC)




Today is Palm Sunday. Do you know what that is?  Click here to read why I think we could also call it Cloak Sunday and here to read about a gentle donkey kind of King.


Palm Sunday is all about Jesus. It carries a lot of significance for Christians, marking the beginning of Holy Week. It is all about remembering something that happened a long, long time ago.

Near the end of Jesus' life on Earth, he and his apostles returned to Jerusalem to celebrate Passover. Passover is a Jewish celebration. That makes sense because Jesus was Jewish. It is something done in remembrance of God saving the Jewish People from slavery. That event occurred many generations before Jesus lived on Earth. In fact, it is still celebrated even today.

So, as I said, Jesus and his disciples (special followers who helped with his ministry) were coming back to Jerusalem for the Passover. When they entered, it was like a glorious parade, all in honor of Jesus. One of the things his fans (followers) did was to lay palm leaves on the road for him. Even though he was being treated like a rock star, he entered on a donkey in a very humble manner. Here, I'll let you read an account from the Book of Matthew...


Matthew 21:1-11

New International Version (NIV)

Jesus Comes to Jerusalem as King

21 As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, say that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away.”
This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet:
“Say to Daughter Zion,
    ‘See, your king comes to you,
gentle and riding on a donkey,
    and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’”[a]
The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks on them for Jesus to sit on. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,
“Hosanna[b] to the Son of David!”
“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”[c]
“Hosanna[d] in the highest heaven!”
10 When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, “Who is this?”
11 The crowds answered, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.”


So, we begin Holy Week on a high note. Next Sunday will be Easter, my favorite of all holidays. In between, though, we will travel some pretty hard days following Jesus' path to the cross. I will try to explain it as we go along as I know not everyone has heard these stories. They have had a powerful impact on my life, though, and I'd like to share them.