Monday, April 15 – “Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion! Shout, Daughter Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and victorious, lowly and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.” (Zechariah 9:9) This prophetic word from some 500 years before the birth of Jesus, is exactly why Jesus enters Jerusalem on Palm Sunday riding a donkey. He is signaling to all who are paying attention that he is the one. He is the one for which the Hebrew people have been waiting, searching and longing. Yet, even with this fulfillment of prophecy, the people still didn’t believe. It is Monday. The memories of yesterday’s triumphant entry are still fresh in everyone’s minds. Yet, there are already people plotting to kill Jesus. The same people who are remembering the celebration of twenty-four hours ago, will be calling for Jesus’ death on Thursday. Jesus knew all of this and he still went. Jesus knew all of this and he didn’t skip town. Jesus will stay because it is his time. This week is his-story. Who will you share it with?
Tuesday, April 16 – “I will take away the chariots from Ephraim and the warhorses from Jerusalem, and the battle bow will be broken. He will proclaim peace to the nations. His rule will extend from sea to sea and from the River to the ends of the earth.” (Zechariah 9:10) The problem that the people had with Jesus is that he didn’t fit their mold. He wasn’t a warrior King that would defeat the mighty Roman Empire and put Israel back on the map as a world super-power. Jesus was the illegitimate son of a teenager who grew up in relative obscurity as the son of a carpenter. When he did finally hit the road, some three years prior, he surrounded himself with fishermen, tax collectors and other common people. He ate dinners with sinners, labored on the Sabbath and touched Gentiles as well as the unclean. Jesus couldn’t be the King as spoken in this prophetic word. If he wasn’t this King then he was a heretic and he needed to die. Jesus knew all of this and he still went. Jesus knew all of this and he didn’t skip town. Jesus will stay because it is his time. This week is his-story. Who will you share it with?
Wednesday, April 17 – “They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting ‘Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the king of Israel!” (John 12:13) These words are still floating in the air around Jerusalem. Some palm branches and cloaks still lay on the road where Jesus entered on Sunday. Yet, a deal has been struck. Jesus is going to be betrayed by one of his very own disciples. The cement might still be wet, but the pathway has been paved for the crucifixion. The religious leaders know what they are going to do, they are simply waiting for the best time to pounce. The people are starting to be worked up in a massive marketing campaign focused on swaying public opinion against Jesus. Tomorrow will be the big day and anticipation is high. Jesus knew all of this and he still went. Jesus knew all of this and he didn’t skip town. Jesus will stay because it is his time. This week is his-story. Who will you share it with?
Thursday, April 18 – “Lord save us! Lord, grant us success! (Psalm 118:25) It is all in the eyes of the beholder. I am sure that the religious leaders of the day prayed these very words for they believed that Jesus was a fake and a fraud and that his blaspheme had to be punished. They believed that they had to stop him and they believed that they were following God’s will in doing so. It is hard to see the mountain top from the depths of the deepest valley. Especially if you have no idea that you are in the deepest valley. What is going to happen over the next four days had to happen in order for salvation to come to all people. Jesus had to die, he had to pay the price for the sins of the world. Maybe the religious leaders were actually doing the will of God? Too heavy and too deep to contemplate on this day. Tonight, is the night, don’t miss it. Jesus knew all of this and he still went. Jesus knew all of this and he didn’t skip town. Jesus stayed because it is his time. Tonight, is his-story. Who will you share it with?
Friday, April 19 – “The Lord said, ‘What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground.’” (Genesis 4:10) Not much to say today, but that everything old is new again. People have been murdering each other since Adam and Eve’s sons Cain and Abel showed us how. When will we understand that we are our brother’s and sister’s keepers? When will we understand that there is a God and that we are saved by grace through faith in Jesus? When will we understand that this life here on earth is fleeting and stop wasting our time hating, harassing and harming each other? Jesus died to make this all a possibility, but the rest is up to you and me. Make this truly a Good Friday by loving those around you and sharing the good news of Jesus. You can start with an invitation to Easter Sunday.