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  • Writer's pictureJohn M

Weekly Liturgy : April 4-10

Luke 19:28-40

Palm Sunday: Even the Stones.  Cara B Hochhalter, 2019
Palm Sunday: Even the Stones. Cara B Hochhalter, 2019

Jesus Enters Jerusalem

Luke 19: 22-40

When Jesus had finished saying all this, he went on toward Jerusalem. As he was getting near Bethphage and Bethany on the Mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples on ahead. He told them, “Go into the next village, where you will find a young donkey that has never been

ridden. Untie the donkey and bring it here. If anyone asks why you are doing this, just say, ‘The Lord needs it.’ ” They went off and found everything just as Jesus had said. While they were untying the donkey, its owners asked, “Why are you doing that?" They answered, “The Lord needs it.” Then they led the donkey to Jesus. They put some of their clothes on its back and helped Jesus get on. And as he rode along, the people spread clothes on the road in front of him. When Jesus started down the Mount of Olives, his large crowd of disciples were happy and praised God because of all the miracles they had seen. They shouted, “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory to God.” Some Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, make your disciples stop shouting!” But Jesus answered, “If they keep quiet, these stones will start shouting.”
Entry of Christ into Jerusalem. Wilhelm Morgner, 1912.

Whenever Herod would enter Jerusalem, he would do so on a warhorse, surrounded by a full procession of chariots and uniformed soldiers, and in the name of the Emperor. The triumphal entries were shows of force, intended to inspire fear and compliance; Caesar's kingdom ruled by threats of violence and required submission.

Jesus, knowing the crowd's expectation that he reveal himself as a political revolutionary, take up arms, and overthrow the Roman occupiers, chooses to subvert this moment by replacing an opportunity to display power with a show of humility.

Riding on a measly donkey and surrounded not by chariots and warriors but waving plants and coats, Jesus uses this dramatic moment to announce that the "kingdom" he offers is one of hope and joy, not fear and violence.

This is the world order Jesus invites us to celebrate and build together. Against our self-protective impulses to amass power and security, Jesus invites us to see that our liberation comes when we replace our weapons and rivalries with compassion and service.


Outward Mindset Application Give information, resources, help, or support to a coworker today.

Pathways Toward Centeredness Who in your life is in a place of need this week? Identify something that would be helpful to them - a meal, a kind note, maybe even financial assistance - and give them that thing.

Questions for Consideration Why do you think it is so easy for humans to mirror the way of Caesar or Herod, and so much harder to mirror the way of Jesus? Can you think of anything that would make it easier to flip this patter? If you were entering your own kingdom, what animal would you choose to ride in on?

Many of our reflections on each week's text come from other sources. If you're interested in reading more of what inspires us, here our our two favorite reflections.


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