For Christians, Palm Sunday is a reminder of the welcoming of Jesus into our hearts and of our willingness to follow Him When we welcome Christ into our hearts, He must have the freedom to change our lives, and through the Holy Spirit, convict us of sin. When we welcome Jesus into our hearts and homes, we receive Him by seeking after Him with real effort. We receive Him by humbling ourselves.
Then Jesus began to criticize openly the cities in which he had done many of his miracles, because they did not repent. “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! If the miracles done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgement than for you! And you, Capemaum, will you be exalted to heaven? No you will be thrown down to Hades! For if the miracles done among you had been done in Sidon, it would have continued to this day. But I tell you, it will be more bearable for the region of Sodom on the day of judgement than for you!"
On Palm Sunday, St Luke 19:41-44 records that as Jesus came near the city of Jerusalem. He saw the city and wept over it, because a great number of the residents rejected His message, lordship, and claim of being God the Son. This was a deeply moving moment for Jesus. His tears were not for His own fate in Jerusalem, but for the fate of the city itself. Scholars believed that the word “Wept” might be rendered 'wailed'; Jesus burst into sobbing as he lamented lost opportunity.
Jesus predicted five specific aspects of the Roman attack upon Jerusalem:
- The building of an embankment.
- The surrounding of the city, laying siege.
- The destruction of the city.
- The killing of the city's inhabitants
- The complete leveling of the city.
• Say no to idolatry
• Say no to hypocrisy
• Say no to hatred
• Say no to pride
• Say no to greed
• Say no to disobedience toward Jesus, the Messiah.
Each one of us should ask ourselves the following questions: Do I get upset at the same situations that angered the heart of God? Do I turn a blind eye at what moved Jesus to tears or failed to notice the people and situations that stirred His compassionate heart and caused Him to take action?
Good Friday is a reminder to Christians that Jesus has in fact dealt with evil in that greatest act of evil. In the greatest act of evil in the history of the world, Jesus was killed. The Son of God stepped out of eternity to live as a human and to die as a divine sacrifice. His death had nothing to do with His sins (since He was sinless), and in fact, we are told that our sins were placed on Him. He suffered in our place so that God could forgive and redeem His creation.
The Scripture tells us that while Christ has redeemed His people, God is being gracious to allow more time for more people to hear what Christ has done for them before He ends evil in an ultimate act of justice (2 Peter 3:8-10). Now is your day of Salvation; if you hear His voice pleading to you to accept His message of salvation, harden not your heart.
Rev. Dr. Peter Grinion, Pastor