It's so easy for us to get so caught up in tradition that we forget that the events that we read about really happened to these people. The Last Supper wasn't some static event that happened in a vacuum. It's more than just a story, more than a painting. It really happened. I've been trying to contemplate the reality of the everyday thoughts, fears, joys, and all the other emotions that the followers of Jesus had during Holy Week.
I'm looking at the clock right now at 5:32pm on Wednesday afternoon and thinking of what it must have felt like for the followers of Jesus as they prepared for the Passover Feast on this evening so many years ago. They had been traveling so I'm sure they were looking forward to the Passover to sit back, relax, eat a little, drink a little wine, and enjoy each others company. It must have been nice to get away from the crowds and have just the core group around them.
Then, as they are eating Jesus begins to speak. "I tell you the truth, one of you will betray me." The Bible says that they began to ask one by one, "It isn't me, is it, Master?"
"Then Judas, already turned traitor, said, 'It isn't me, is it, Rabbi?'
Jesus said, 'Don't play games with me, Judas.'"
Then Jesus starts talking CRAZY TALK! "Eat my flesh, drink my blood..." WHAT?!?!?
WHAT IS GOING ON?!?!?
By the end of the night they would end up at the Mount of Olives, and the garden at Gethsemane. Jesus would continue to bewilder them by telling Peter, one of the closest to Him, that he would betray Jesus. This can't be. Say it 'aint so Peter. Then eventually by the end of the night Judas shows up and greets Jesus with a kiss. Soldiers appear out of nowhere. Jesus is arrested. The disciples flee in fear for their lives.
What were they thinking at that moment?
What happened? This was supposed to be the King. We thought He was going to conquer the Romans, and now he's been arrested?
This isn't at all what we thought about when He kept talking about "His Kingdom." We thought we were going to be ruling and reigning with him and now we are hiding to save our own skins?
What went wrong?
As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, "Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, tell him that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away."
This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet: "Say to the Daughter of Zion, 'See, your king comes to you, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.'
The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. They brought the donkey and the colt, placed their cloaks on them, and Jesus sat on them. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,
"Hosanna to the Son of David!"
"Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!"
"Hosanna in the highest!"
When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, "Who is this? The crowds answered, "This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee."
I was learning a new song for Palm Sunday called "Hosanna" when I learned something interesting. I learned that Hosanna means "Save Us". I always thought that Hosanna meant "Here is the King", or "This is the promised One", or "praise Him", or "He is worthy". I never realized it was a plea.
Since the fall of man there has been a seperation between the Creator and the created. Mankind has longed for that "connection" to God that we were created to enjoy. Ever since sin entered the world there has been an empty spot in man's soul that could only be filled by that connection.I wonder if there was some sort of sense that the "connection" could finally be re-established on that day of the Triumphal Entry. I wonder if that is why they cried out "SAVE US"?