Passion Week: Power and Victory
[Last] Sunday was Palm Sunday, the Christian celebration that commemorates the entrance of Jesus into Jerusalem (Matthew 21:1-9), when palm branches were placed in His path to honor Him. It marks the beginning of a busy week — typically referred to as Passion Week or Holy Week — before His arrest on Maundy Thursday, His crucifixion on Good Friday, and His resurrection on Easter Sunday.
So much of who Jesus was, as well as the nature of man, was revealed in the course of that one week. Jesus cleansed the temple for the second time, then disputed with the Pharisees regarding His authority. He gave His Olivet Discourse on the end times and taught many things, including the signs of His second coming. He ate His Last Supper with His disciples in the upper room, then went to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray as He waited for His hour to come. It was here that Jesus, having been betrayed by Judas, was arrested and taken to several sham trials before the chief priests, Pontius Pilate, and Herod. (Click here for a PDF timeline of the week.)
While the week ended in dark tragedy for Him, the mood of the people on Palm Sunday was joyful and triumphant. They could hardly contain their excitement. It was a day of victory and celebration.
What will it take to ignite the church and our people? What will it take to experience a Palm Sunday kind of excitement in which our congregations are truly filled with praise and our lives are vibrant with enthusiasm about the resurrection reality?
You can be a catalyst if, during the next several days, your messages are bold and your joy contagious. Challenge your people to lift “Holy Hurrahs” and give God credit for all things. Urge them to give witness to the power of their faith and to live with a sense of victory in a world of sorrow.
In short, you hold the key, my colleague! Through your very countenance, you can let your flock see how blessed you feel to have an Easter message to deliver and eternal hope to anticipate.
“As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!’” (Romans 10:15, KJV).
©2013 HB London. Originally posted March 18, 2013 at The Heart of A Pastor Blog.