As I was led to do a blog about Holy Week. I will continue to post this introduction…
Most churches have had to scale down their usual services and even close their doors because with COVID 19 creating physical distance from one another; we are not permitted to gather together. It is important during this time that we remember we all have a personal relationship with God and our continued worship, prayer and time with God should not decrease nor stop because of this. You are responsible to keep connected. You are responsible for your prayer time with God. You are responsible for your worship. The church building should not keep you from that. Philippians 2:12 says “Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” You are responsible to seek God out yourself. We usually hear an abbreviated version of the story of Holy Week leading up to Resurrection Sunday or some call Easter, but let’s read it and know for ourselves. Know about the sacrifice, the pain, the beatings, the determination, the love that Jesus had for us and what he went through to save us from sin!
Read with me Luke 22:47 – 71 and 23:1 – 48
Judas brings the crowd with him to give Jesus the kiss and betray him. If you don’t know the story, Judas conspired with the religious leaders to betray Jesus. They needed Judas to single out Jesus so they could arrest him. They agreed that the man Judas approached and kissed in greeting would be Jesus and they would go in and take him. In certain parts of the world the traditional greeting among men is a kiss. So Judas wasn’t doing anything out of the ordinary, which is why he could do this as a subtle way to single Jesus out. The Study Bible makes note that ‘isn’t it iconic that a gesture of greeting would be the means of betrayal.
Jesus told Peter that he would deny knowing him, but Peter adamantly told Jesus that he would never deny him. He was sure he would never do that. But what happened? The rooster did crow to show proof of Jesus’ word. How easily we say what we would do for Jesus, but then how easily we forget. I always think about that. We say we believe what Jesus’ words, but we really don’t because our actions shows something very different. The Study bible notes that this experience Peter had changed his life from a halfhearted follower to a repentant disciple and finally to the kind of person Christ could use to build his church. He had to be broken to be made whole. Have a contrite heart for God to work in Him. Hallelujah!!
Between 12 noon and 3p Jesus’ was crucified. I grew up with a family tradition on this day. We usually didn’t have school so we would be home. My Dad would shut the house down completely during this time. No tv, no music, no games…nothing. Absolute quiet. And we would read the bible. Read about this week and what happened to Jesus and what he would endure for ME. I went along with the program and did as I was told, but now as an adult, I truly reverence this time. I can’t even imagine the humiliation, the ridicule, the beating, the pain, the disregard for who he truly was in God. It’s almost scary that they hated him that much to want him dead! The believing criminal who was crucified with him, said to the un-believing criminal just what I’m thinking “Don’t you have any fear of God at all?”
The bible says that during this 3 hour time period, darkness covered the entire land, although it was the middle of the day.