This is our final week in our lent series and we are looking at the Coronation.
Think about this past week. Did anything life changing happen? For many of us this week wouldn’t have been out of the ordinary, but for some of us we might have said “yes!” Maybe you were sick, got a new job, had a baby, or someone broke your heart. If that is the case you understand how a few small moments can change everything.
It’s hard to believe that in a few days people went from crying “Hosanna!! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord” as Jesus rode into Jerusalem, to shouting “Crucify Him!” as He stood before Pilate on trial for blasphemy.
These scripture readings prepare us for Holy Week next week and we pick up on Thursday. It has been a long hard week; Jesus knows what is coming and what must be done. Sitting in the truth of that must have been suffocating and because we know the story it easy to move past Thursday, Friday and Saturday. But it is important to understand the weight of those days because it makes the miracle of Easter Sunday all the more magnificent.
Jesus spends the day preparing for the Passover, where He will remember the rescue of God’s people from slavery in Egypt. It is a time of remembrance and the celebration of God’s faithfulness. In an upper room, the ultimate sacrificial lamb shares the Passover meal with His friends and family for the last time. With His disciples He then makes His way to The Garden of Gethsemane, where Jesus spends His final free moments praying for God’s will to be done.
The heaviness is sinking in. We know the end and Jesus knows the end, but there is so much pain and suffering that takes place in the middle. He knew the price was worth paying. That is why it is important to prepare for Holy Week by reflecting on the details over the next few days, because YOU were worth the price! All the betrayal, all the false accusations, and all the suffering were worth it because the story doesn’t end there. The stories of Christ followers never end in death. Resurrection is always peeking around the corner.
The message of Easter is the Good News! Somebody passed through death and came out the other side, alive and in a new body that can never die again. The scriptures say that Jesus is the first fruits of the new creation, meaning, for all who trust Him, we too will pass through death, rise again and receive bodies that will never die again. That is incredible!
That wasn’t the women’s response. At least not yet. Mark tells us that they “went out and fled from the tomb, for trembling and astonishment had seized them, and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid” (Mark 16:8). This week try to imagine all the hope, all the disappointment, all the disillusionment, all the confusion, then all the astonishment that the followers of Jesus would have experienced. As you do, recount all the ways you’ve felt those things over the years. Or perhaps you feel even now.
Then remember, that if you take this story deep into your heart, whatever feels like death to you is not the end. Sunday is coming. It is always coming!
Why is it good to not avoid pain, but also not to wallow in it?
What in your life needs a resurrection right now?
Recall a time when Jesus astonished you. Journal that memory.
How will you celebrate that Jesus is the Suffering Servant, crowned King of the world this Easter?
How will you apply what you have learned in the last 40 days?
Verse of the Week
“With a loud cry, Jesus breathed his last. The curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. And when the centurion, who stood there in front of Jesus, saw how he died, he said,“Surely this man was the Son of God!”