By Travis Lauterbach
Many Christians are in the midst of observing “Holy Week”, which focuses reflection, devotion, remembrance, and prayer on the last days of Jesus’ life before His death and resurrection.
Holy Week began with Palm Sunday.
This day recounts Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover and to offer Himself up as “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29).
Then for the next three days, Jesus taught in the temple, increasingly came under the ridicule of those who opposed Him, and famously flipped over the tables of the money changers.
By the time Thursday arrived, it was time to prepare and celebrate the Passover meal.
On that night, Jesus instituted the Sacrament of Holy Communion and taught His disciple to love one another as He has loved them.
After they finished the meal, Jesus and His disciples went to the Garden of Gethsemane.
He prayed that if it were possible, the cup of wrath might pass from Him. But knowing that He must fulfill the mission of salvation, He prayed that God’s will be done.
Very soon afterward, one of Jesus’ disciples who had left during the Passover meal came to the garden with a mob.
Judas betrayed Jesus to His enemies.
They arrested Him and quickly led Him through a kangaroo court involving the Sanhedrin, the Roman Governor, and King Herod.
Soon after 9 AM the next morning, Jesus was hanging on a Roman cross.
From the cross, He cried out “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46).
Then, shortly before His death six hours later, Jesus announced, “It is finished” (John 19:30).
He had taken the place of sinners and died for the world. He is salvation.
After His followers hastily buried Him, they rested on the Sabbath day.
Early Sunday morning, the women went to finish the burial. Instead, they learned that Jesus had risen from the dead!
Jesus had defeated sin, death, and hell!
Travis Lauterbach is the pastor of Prince of Peace Lutheran Church located in the Falcon Ridge Business Park in Mesquite, NV.