Palm Sunday 2021
The Passion of Jesus Christ
as read in worship on Sunday, March 28, 2021
Matthew 26, selected verses
The Plot of Judas and the Shadow of Betrayal
Then one of the twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, "What will you give me if I betray him to you?" They paid him thirty pieces of silver. And from that moment he began to look for an opportunity to betray him.
When it was evening, Jesus took his place with the twelve; and while they were eating, he said, "Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me." And they became greatly distressed and began to say to him one after another, "Surely not I, Lord?" He answered, "The one who had dipped his hand into the bowl with me will betray me. The Son of Man goes as it is written of him, but woe to that one by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been better for that one not to have been born." Judas, who betrayed him, said, "Surely not I, Rabbi!" He replied, "You have said so."
Selected verses from Luke 22 and Matthew 26
Who Is the Greatest? and The Shadow of Desertion
A dispute also arose among them as to which one of them was to be regarded as the greatest. But he said to them, "The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those in authority over them are called benefactors.
But not so with you; rather the greatest among you must become like the youngest, and the leader like one who serves. For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one at the table? But I am among you as one who serves."
Then Jesus said to them, you will all become deserters because of me this night; for it is written: 'I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.'
But after I am raised up, I will go ahead of you to Galilee." Peter said to him, "Though all become deserters because of you, I will never desert you." Jesus said to him, "Truly I tell you, this very night, before the cock crows, you will deny me three times." Peter said to him, "Even though I must die with you, I will not deny you." And so said all the disciples.
The Agony of the Soul
Father, the Hour has Come
Selected verses from Luke 22 and John 17
Jesus came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives; and the disciples followed him. When he reached the place, he said to them, "Pray that you may not come into the time of trial." Then he withdrew from them about a stone's throw, knelt down and prayed, "Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me; yet, not my will but yours be done." Then an angel from heaven appeared to him and gave him strength. In his anguish he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down on the ground.
That They May All Be One
Jesus prayed, "I am not asking you to take them out of the world, but I ask you to protect them from the evil one. They do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to the world. Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. As you have sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify myself, so that they may also be sanctified in truth.
"I ask not only on behalf of these, but also on behalf of those who will believe in my through their word, that they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one, as we are one."
The Unshared Vigil and The Betrayal
He came and found them sleeping; and he said to Peter, "Simon, are you asleep? Could you not keep awake one hour? Keep awake and pray that you may not come into the time of trial; the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak."
And he went away and prayed, saying the same words. And once more he came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were very heavy; and they did not know what to say to him.
He came a third time and said, "Are you still sleeping and taking your rest? Enough! The hour has come; the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners."
While he was still speaking, Judas, one of the twelve, arrived; and with him there was a crowd with swords and clubs, from the chief priests, the scribes and the elders.
Now the betrayer had given them a sign, saying, "The one I will kiss is the man; arrest him and lead him away under guard." So when he came, he went up to him at once and said, "Rabbi!" and kissed him. Then they laid hands on him and arrested him.
John 18, selected verses
Simon Peter and another disciple followed Jesus. Since that disciple was known to the high priest, he went with Jesus into the courtyard of the high priest, but Peter was standing outside at the gate. So the other disciple, who was known to the high priest, went out, spoke to the woman who guarded the gate and brought Peter in. The woman said to Peter, "You are not also one of this man's disciples, are you?" He said, "I am not."
Now the slaves and the police had made a charcoal fire because it was cold, and they were standing around it and warming themselves. Peter also was standing with them and warming himself.
They asked him, "You are not also one of his disciples, are you?" He denied it and said, "I am not." One of the slaves of the high priest, a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off asked, "Did I not see you in the garden with him?" Again, Peter denied it, and at that moment, the cock crowed.
Matthew 27, selected verses
The Trial Before Pilate
Now Jesus stood before the governor and the governor asked him, "Are you the King of the Jews?" Jesus said, "You say so." But when he was accused by the chief priests and the elders, he did not answer. Then Pilate said to him, "Do you not hear how many accusations they make against you?" But he gave them no answer, not even to a single charge, so that the governor was greatly alarmed.
Now at the festival the governor was accustomed to release a prisoner for the crowd, anyone whom they wanted. At that time they had a notorious prisoner called Barabbas. So after they had gathered, Pilate said to them, "Whom do you want me to release for you, Barabbas, or Jesus who is called the Messiah?"
The governor again said to them, "Which of the two do you want me to release for you?" And they said "Barabbas." Pilate then said to them, "Then what should I do with Jesus who is called the Messiah?" All of them said "Let him be crucified!" Then he asked, "Why, what evil has he done?" But they shouted all the more, "Let him be crucified!"
The Shadow of the Cross
Then the soldiers led him into the courtyard of the palace, that is, the governor's headquarters; and they called together the whole cohort. And they clothed him in a purple cloak; and after twisting some thorns into a crown, they put it on him. And they began saluting him, "Hail, King of the Jews!" They struck his head with a reed, spat upon him, and knelt down in homage to him. After mocking him, they stripped him of the purple cloak, and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him out to crucify him.
Pastor Lex (restatement of The Gospel of John, Chapter 1)
Before the world was created, the Word already existed; the Word was with God, and the Word was the same as God. From the beginning the Word was with God. Through the Word God made all things; not one thing in all creation was made without the Word.
The Word was the source of life, and this life brought light to humanity.
The Word became a human being, and, full of grace and truth, lived among us.
The Word was in the world; and though God made the world through the Word, the world did not recognize the Word.
Some, however, did receive the Word and believed in the Word.
So, the Word gave them the right to become God's children.
This is how the judgment works: the light has come into the world, but the people love the shadows, rather than the light, because their deeds are evil.