Scripture Reading: Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord.
We bless you from the house of the Lord.
The Lord is God,
and he has given us light.
Bind the festal procession with branches,
up to the horns of the altar.
You are my God, and I will give thanks to you;
you are my God, I will extol you.
O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good,
for his steadfast love endures forever. –Psalm 118:26-28
We come to the end of our Psalm for this week and understand why it was included in the lectionary. It is the source of the words used by the crowds that rejoiced in Jesus’ arrival in Jerusalem, on what we now call Palm Sunday. Can you image being a modern-day news reported standing with mike in hand getting people’s reaction to the arrival of Jesus. I am sure the responses were as varied as the people in the crowd. Many probably joined just to see what was going on: How would the Romans react? What would the religious leaders do? Some might have longed for the equivalent of a selfie they could share with their friends. Others having heard him speak were impressed with his teachings and wanted to hear more. A few knew who he was and why he was there. I doubt anyone fully understood what came next.
Jesus was well acquainted with the scriptures, particularly the Psalms. He knew that these words of praise were preceded by Psalm 118: 22 The stone that the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone. His donkey ride into Jerusalem was the culmination of his entering the gate. Having planted the seeds for the coming Kingdom and started the process of training those responsible for its development, he was ready for the final phase of his mission which was the initiation of a new heaven and a new earth ruled by love.
Prayer: God of yesterday, today, and tomorrow, we thank you for the gift of your Son who is our role model, our nurturer, and our savior. For his sake, we enter your courts with singing as we experience the source of joy. Amen.