Preaching to the Choir

These are some sermons, but mostly lectionary discussions. It also has prayers for some Sundays.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Discussion for Palm/Passion Sunday

The passage I will be preaching on is Matthew 21:1-11.

1 As Jesus and the disciples approached Jerusalem, they came to the town of Bethphage on the Mount of Olives. Jesus sent two of them on ahead. 2 “Go into the village over there,” he said. “As soon as you enter it, you will see a donkey tied there, with its colt beside it. Untie them and bring them to me. 3 If anyone asks what you are doing, just say, ‘The Lord needs them,’ and he will immediately let you take them.”
4 This took place to fulfill the prophecy that said,
5 “Tell the people of Israel,[a]

‘Look, your King is coming to you.

He is humble, riding on a donkey—

riding on a donkey’s colt.’”[b]
6 The two disciples did as Jesus commanded. 7 They brought the donkey and the colt to him and threw their garments over the colt, and he sat on it.[c]
8 Most of the crowd spread their garments on the road ahead of him, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9 Jesus was in the center of the procession, and the people all around him were shouting,
“Praise God[d] for the Son of David!

Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the Lord!

Praise God in highest heaven!”[e]
10 The entire city of Jerusalem was in an uproar as he entered. “Who is this?” they asked.
11 And the crowds replied, “It’s Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.”

Read the passage several times. Let it soak into you. What do you see? What do you hear? What gets down into your mind? Your heart? Your soul?

If you were there that day, where were you? Were you one of his disciples? One of the crowd? The owner of the Donkey? Were you cutting down branches for others to wave? Were you waving them and shouting to the Lord? Were you someone in the city, asking who is this? Were you one of the religious leaders? the busy housewife trying to make sure all is prepared for Passover? The shopkeeper who is facing harassed & demanding customers? The vendor at the souvenir kiosk? The Roman soldier trying to discern who may be an actual threat? The country-come-to-town tourist who is in town for the occasion? Who would you want to be? What would it feel like to you to be there that day? How would your heart be touched? Your soul?

A friend of mine asks these questions for us to consider; There were other processions of all sorts probably going on. What made Jesus' entry so different? What got the attention of the crowds? Was the whole event merely an episode of "crowd mentality?" What does Jesus' entry into the turmoil of my life mean?

Good things to ponder as we prepare not just for Palm Sunday, but the beginning of Holy Week that is a turn of events from this excitement.

Picture from Church Powerpoint by Rev Dorothy Okray


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