We've had a few laughs over the last few posts, but we're nearing the start of Holy Week, and it doesn't bring a lot of laughs.
Triumphal...what a word! It's as though you can hear the shouts of "Hosanna" and see the crowds waving and filled with excitement. But Christ knew by then that the warm feelings of the crowd towards Him would not survive the week.
What was it like to know that those cheers would turn to jeers in a matter of days?
I will forever be indebted to Ken Warren, a former staff member at my church, who once preached a Palm Sunday message about what it was like to be Christ, knowing how the week would end. It changed my view of Palm Sunday forever. I no longer think of it as a high point for Jesus. Now I wonder if there was a sick feeling in the pit of His stomach as He watched the crowd from that donkey.
Ken talked about the way that we tend to dismiss Palm Sunday as a parade, a time of jubilation, separating it from the rest of the story...the part where Jesus sacrificed His own life so that we could have eternal life.
He ended his message by showing us a brief video clip of another parade that ended badly. A time when a leader entered a city, greeted by cheering crowds, only to die in that city a short time later.
If President Kennedy had known how the trip to Texas would end, would he have gone anyway? Surely not.
But that's exactly what Jesus did.
Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death—even death on a cross! ~ Philippians 2:5-9