Hi friends! In worship on Sunday, instead of giving a sermon, I simply read the Passion Story as it was first told – in the Bible. As we begin the most important week in the Christian year, what can any preacher say that would be more powerful than the words of the Bible? How can anyone tell the story – in words, in print, or on film – better than the Bible tells it? I learned in seminary that sometimes preachers need to get out of the way and let God’s word do the talking. So instead of preaching, I encouraged the congregation to hear God’s word as we listened to the story of Jesus’ last week on earth.
My prayer is that, as you read these words, you will walk with him on this journey,
Through Maundy Thursday and Good Friday, right up until Easter morning. But hold on, we’re not there yet. We have a lot of work to do.
We know that on Palm Sunday, Jesus had his triumphant entry into Jerusalem. After clearing the Temple of the moneychangers and merchants on Monday, Jesus spent most of the week there, teaching and preaching to all those who would listen. He also spent much of that time putting up with challenges to his authority by the chief priests and the scribes. In addition, he took this opportunity to warn his disciples about what was to come, and how they could be ready for his return. On Thursday, the wheels are set in motion for the Passion story, starting with Judas. You can read Matthew’s account of this story here.
As you contemplate all that will happen to Jesus this week, think about these questions:
1 – What disturbs you the most about the story of Holy Week?
2 – What gives you the most hope about the story of Holy Week?
3 – If you could ask Jesus one question about what happened to him this week, what would it be?