Friday, March 20, 2009


(Luke 21:37; 22:39)

A wealthy citizen of Jerusalem permitted Jesus the use of his private garden when the Master visited the city. Our Lord made use of the garden, called Gethsemane each day during the week of Passover.

The garden must have been a serene place. Jesus surely found his favorite spot there. Jesus bid most of the disciples who escorted Him to stay in one area. He requested those to whom He was closest to follow him further into the garden. As the foursome came to another spot, the Teacher asked the three others to wait and pray for him. He went on a ways and fell on His knees and began to pray.

Why did Christ chose to go to the garden to pray? Could He have wanted to feel close to the Father? We know He was agonizing over what lay ahead for Him. He could have prayed anywhere else in the city—in the upper room,at the temple,or any where he chose.

The upper room was offered to Peter and James for a few hours. Those who were there could have had a time of community prayer. The Temple fell under the control of the priests, who were plotting to kill Him.

Jesus chose the one place where He could be alone with his Father. A place where the two of them had spent quality time together.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The Triumphal Entry

It resembled a parade. Jesus' disciples found a donkey colt for Him to ride. They covered the animal's back with their coats, making a place for Jesus to sit. People led Him through the Bethpage-Bethany area. Others followed the Teacher, waving their coats or Palm branches. Some placed their cloaks on the ground before Him. Others laid Palm branches on the path ahead of the Master.

The crowd called out jubilantly. “Hosanna!” “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.” The religious leaders were terrified. Because of what they saw the Saducees and Pharisees started looking for ways to kill Jesus.

The people in the crowd were wanting Jesus to become an earthly king. This was not why God sent Him to earth. They didn't understand God's will for His Son. The priests and the rulers of the region turned them into an angry mob.

Monday, March 16, 2009

The Christ

He came as a baby, born to a poor carpenter and a very young woman. His earthly father, a carpenter trained him in the skills of wood crafting. At the age of 12, He sat in the temple listening to the religious leaders. When his earthly parents found Him. He told them, “I have to be about my Father's business.”

At about 30 years old, He became an itinerant preacher. His cousin baptized Him. Then the adversary tempted him for 40 days. As he began his ministry, He chose 12 men to follow Him. Those those disciples believed He would establish an earthly kingdom.

Every time He spoke to a crowd, the religious leaders became afraid. These priests decided He had to die.

One disciple, a non-Galilean, betrayed Him, leading the officials to the garden where He went to pray. Before dawn came, He was seen by the Chief Priest and the Roman governor, who ordered Him scourged.
The soldiers led Him and two common thieves out of the city to the place of the skull, called Golgotha. There he was hanged on a cross to die a criminal's death. During this ordeal, He took upon himself all of our sins—mine and yours.

He did this for us because of His mercy and great love for us.

Fear, Courage: God Is With Us  Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD ...