Holy Week: Silent Wednesday

Day 4: Silent Wednesday

Tomb of Lazarus

The Bible doesn’t say what the Lord did on Wednesday of Passion Week. Scholars speculate that after two exhausting days in Jerusalem, Jesus and his disciples spent this day resting in Bethany in anticipation of the Passover.

Bethany was about two miles east of Jerusalem. Here Lazarus and his two sisters, Mary and Martha lived. They were close friends of Jesus, and probably hosted him and the disciples during these final days in Jerusalem.

Just a short time previously, Jesus had revealed to the disciples, and the world, that he had power over death by raising Lazarus from the grave. After seeing this incredible miracle, many people in Bethany believed that Jesus was the Son of God and put their faith in him. Also in Bethany just a few nights earlier, Lazarus’ sister Mary had lovingly anointed the feet of Jesus with expensive perfume.

While we can only speculate, it’s fascinating to consider how our Lord Jesus spent this final quiet day with his dearest friends and followers.

Jesus is Loving Barabbas – Video + Questions and Reflection

BARABBAS Questions and Reflection

Barabbas could be given freedom, but deserves the chains and crucifixion that he is destined for.

How are we like Barabbas?

What is one thing you would like to be set free from at this moment?

Jesus has healed, restored, and set free. Why is he facing punishment?

Reflection – Ask Jesus to help set you free from whatever it is that is weighing you down.

People vs the Father

Who does Barabbas think set him free?

Who actually sets Barabbas free?

How have you seen the Father work through circumstances in your life to set you free?

Reflection – Take a moment to thank the Father for those that encourage you and love on you in your walk toward freedom in Christ.

“Jesus knew that the Father would have to treat Jesus like Barabbas, so He could treat Barabbas like Jesus.”

What does this powerful statement mean to you personally?

Reflection – Imagine Jesus on the cross, giving His life for you. Thank Him for taking your place and giving you freedom.

Romans 5:8 says, “but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

Think about that one thing you would like to be set free from again.  What shame does Jesus need to take?  What sin do you need to hand to Him? What are you holding on to that on Jesus needs to set you free from, by His power alone?

Reflection – Take a moment and pray to the Father and say Jesus is enough for _____________.

Maybe there are a few things that you need to fill in that blank for.  It’s okay, Jesus is enough.

When you are done, take a moment to quiet your Spirit and listen to the voice of the Father. 

Holy Week: Mount of Olives

Day 3: Tuesday in Jerusalem, Mount of Olives

Jerusalem


On Tuesday morning, Jesus and his disciples returned to Jerusalem. They passed the withered fig tree on their way, and Jesus taught them about faith.

At the Temple, the religious leaders aggressively challenged Jesus’ authority, attempting to ambush him and create an opportunity for his arrest. But Jesus evaded their traps and pronounced harsh judgment on them: “Blind guides! … For you are like whitewashed tombs—beautiful on the outside but filled on the inside with dead people’s bones and all sorts of impurity. Outwardly you look like righteous people, but inwardly your hearts are filled with hypocrisy and lawlessness…Snakes! Sons of vipers! How will you escape the judgment of hell?” (Matthew 23:24-33)

Later that afternoon, Jesus left the city and went with his disciples to the Mount of Olives, which overlooks Jerusalem due east of the Temple. Here Jesus gave the Olivet Discourse, an elaborate prophecy about the destruction of Jerusalem and the end of the age. He taught in parables using symbolic language about end times events, including his Second Coming and the final judgment.

Scripture indicates that Tuesday was the day Judas Iscariot negotiated with the Sanhedrin to betray Jesus (Matthew 26:14-16).

After a tiring day of confrontation and warnings about the future, once again, Jesus and the disciples stayed the night in Bethany.

  • The tumultuous events of Tuesday and the Olivet Discourse are recorded in Matthew 21:23–24:51, Mark 11:20–13:37, Luke 20:1–21:36, and John 12:20–38

Holy Week: Clears the Temple

Day 2: Monday Jesus Clears the Temple

Trump clears the temple

 Jesus clears the Temple of money changers. Rischgitz/Getty Images

On Monday morning, Jesus returned with his disciples to Jerusalem. Along the way, Jesus cursed a fig tree because it had failed to bear fruit. Some scholars believe this cursing of the fig tree represented God’s judgment on the spiritually dead religious leaders of Israel. Others believe the symbolism extended to all believers, demonstrating that genuine faith is more than just outward religiosity. True, living faith must bear spiritual fruit in a person’s life.

When Jesus arrived at the Temple he found the courts full of corrupt money changers. He began overturning their tables and clearing the Temple, saying, “The Scriptures declare, ‘My Temple will be a house of prayer,’ but you have turned it into a den of thieves.” (Luke 19:46)

On Monday evening Jesus stayed in Bethany again, probably in the home of his friends, Mary, Martha, and Lazarus.

  • Monday’s events are recorded in Matthew 21:12–22, Mark 11:15–19, Luke 19:45-48, and John 2:13-17.

Holy Week: Palm Sunday

Day 1: Palm Sunday’s Triumphal Entry

Palm Sunday

 Jesus Christ’s triumphal entry into Jerusalem. SuperStock / Getty Images

On the Sunday before his death, Jesus began his trip to Jerusalem, knowing that soon he would lay down his life for the sins of the world. Nearing the village of Bethphage, he sent two of his disciples ahead to look for a donkey with its unbroken colt. Jesus instructed the disciples to untie the animals and bring them to him.

Then Jesus sat on the young donkey and slowly, humbly, made his triumphal entryinto Jerusalem, fulfilling the ancient prophecy in Zechariah 9:9. The crowds welcomed him by waving palm branches in the air and shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!”

On Palm Sunday, Jesus and his disciples spent the night in Bethany, a town about two miles east of Jerusalem. In all likelihood, Jesus stayed in the home of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus, whom Jesus had raised from the dead.

  • Jesus’ Triumphal Entry is recorded in Matthew 21:1-11, Mark 11:1-11, Luke 19:28-44, and John 12:12-19.

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Hey Family, I know that there are many options out there, but I wanted to remind you of a gift that Oakwood gives to you FOR FREE. The RightNow Media Library is filled with resources and teachings that you and your family can use to grow in your faith. I have already enjoyed a series I found under the Easter Section that has stretched me and helped set my mind on the coming days of Holy Week.

Stay safe!

In Christ,

Pastor B