Sunday, March 25, 2018

Palm Sunday - The tragedy of this event was the fickleness of the people. At this point they are acclaiming the Lord Jesus as the long expected Messiah – within a few days they were crying for His death!

One of the scariest questions in the Palm Sunday story…. How will I respond when Jesus comes riding humbly into my life? Will I recognize the time of God’s coming to me?  Will I recognize and welcome God’s personal visit?

Scripture Text: (MK 11:1-10)
When Jesus and his disciples drew near to Jerusalem,
to Bethphage and Bethany at the Mount of Olives,
he sent two of his disciples and said to them,
"Go into the village opposite you,
and immediately on entering it,
you will find a colt tethered on which no one has ever sat.
Untie it and bring it here.
If anyone should say to you,
'Why are you doing this?' reply,
'The Master has need of it
and will send it back here at once.'"
So they went off
and found a colt tethered at a gate outside on the street,
and they untied it.
Some of the bystanders said to them,
"What are you doing, untying the colt?"
They answered them just as Jesus had told them to,
and they permitted them to do it.
So they brought the colt to Jesus
and put their cloaks over it.
And he sat on it.
Many people spread their cloaks on the road,
and others spread leafy branches
that they had cut from the fields.
Those preceding him as well as those following kept crying out:
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!
Blessed is the kingdom of our father David that is to come!
Hosanna in the highest!"

Jesus enters Jerusalem on a colt (a kingly practice) and the people respond with great joy.  Far too quickly that joy response turns to the bitter hatred shown in the trial and cruel death of Jesus.  From the "hosannas" of Palm Sunday to the jeering, "Give us Barabbas" of Good Friday seems such a long leap in a very short time.  What a fickle lot we are!

What is the meaning of the events of that day when Jesus enters Jerusalem?  It shows us how easily we miss the point.  We really do need a rescuer and Jesus is God's offering of that gift to us, calling us from the instability of our specious responses to the down-to-earth reality and the beauty of Jesus' constant channeling of God's saving love for us.

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