Written by Dave Lenehan
The most important week in all of history started with a celebration parade:
“The next day the large crowd that had come to the feast heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem. So they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet him, crying out, “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord, even the King of Israel!” (John 12:12-13, ESV)
Toward the end of the week, the words of our Lord Jesus brought salvation to each one of us.
“Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.” (John 13:20)
The end of the week came with physical, mental and emotional anguish.
“And he said, “Abba, Father, all things are possible for you. Remove this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.” (Mark 14:36)
“…Again the high priest asked him, “Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?” And Jesus said, “I am, and you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven.”(Mark 14:61-62)
“When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.” (John 19:30)
I love this verse because it shows us that in this most important week, Jesus was fully, consciously, actively in control all the way to the end. He wasn’t killed randomly. He wasn’t ambushed or surprised with death on a cross. He did it on purpose. He fulfilled his initial mission that started with his birth. It was completely and totally his choice.
Then, the joyous surprise!!
“…the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay.” (Matthew 28:5)
Jesus didn’t wait long before he gave his departing words and commands to his followers:
“And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20)
Jesus death and burial is not one that we as followers of Christ mourn. It is a time of celebration, of praise, of thanksgiving to God for giving us the ultimate, life-rescuing gift – the sacrifice of his Only Son Jesus to pay the debt that we should be paying for our sin. And the best part is that he is no longer dead…the week ends with the amazing miracle of his resurrection…conquering death for eternity!
Holy Week – The Triumphal Entry, the Crucifixion, Resurrection Sunday, Redemption Weekend…this IS the greatest week in history.
“For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:6-8). Tell someone this incredible news today!