By Not Known

Palm Sunday marks the beginning of the Holy or Passion week and ends on Easter Sunday. From the triumphal entry of Jesus riding on a donkey into Jerusalem to his crucifixion is only a span of five days. The crowd moves from hopeful cry of “Hosanna!” (Lk 19:28-40) to the angry shout, “Crucify him! Crucify him!” (Lk 23:21).         

Jesus’ Anguish and sorrow are evident as he approaches death alone when he asks his Father, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Mk 15:34; Ps 22:1). Even his disciples betrayed him.  He was made a Sacrificial Lamb (Jn 1:29) blameless and pure-to die not for himself but for sinners such as you and I. By relying on prayer and communion with God in Solitude, Jesus faced his dark hour as a shining light. Already committed to God’s will, Jesus continued to pray with even more Intense emotion. He prayed more earnestly and laboured so hard in his prayer that his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground. Such perspiration indicates the intensity of Jesus’ feelings and condition (Lk 22:39-46). Jesus is human as he struggled to Overcome the fear of execution but he is the Son of God when he said obediently, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” (Lk 22:42; Mt 26:39). Jesus knew his humiliation and death on the cross would take away the sins of the world and give Newness of life to all who believe in him (Ro 6:4). This is the ultimate purpose and redemption plan of God because he loves the world he has created.

How are we to respond to the PASSION of Christ?

i) Newness of life – Live a life that is passionate with new motives and focus. We live now to please God and not for ourselves. Once we lived for temporal possessions but now eternity holds our treasures and our conduct is controlled, not by the judgement of fallible men, but by the rule of a heart-searching God. The will of God has now become our law. We count ourselves happy as we fulfill his purposes, honour his name, and extend his kingdom.

ii) Not to conform but to be transformed – Transformation takes place by offering ourselves as living sacrifices and the renewal of our minds (Rom 12:1-2). It sounds so daunting as it is all-encompassing. We have a new citizenship in the Kingdom of God, not fashioned by the world but ruled by a sovereign, omnipotent, omniscient Ruler of all creation.

“Let the purpose of God, for which you ought to adore Him every day, be plenteously fulfilled in you, and let it be seen that He has chosen you to know Christ that you may make Him known to others! ~ C H Spurgeon

Ruth Tong