It was supposed to be a parade … a glorious entry into the Holy City, Jerusalem! Maybe not quite like the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade or the Rose Bowl Parade. However, the Palm Sunday Parade is a great story, a magnificent story, a story so well told … that we preachers have a tough time coming up with a sermon about it. The truth of the matter is, that after the story’s read ... there really isn’t much else left to say. Plot, movement, atmosphere, emotion … they are all there in the biblical account. High drama at it’s best!
But once you’ve said all of that … you have to add that Palm Sunday was a terrifying day. There’s just no escaping the terror of this text … we can’t avoid the dark and sinister events that follow Palm Sunday. An Innocent Man is about to be murdered! And it’s even more shocking because we know that God is involved in the murder plot! God knows it’s going to happen … and does absolutely nothing to stop it.
It was shocking enough in the Old Testament when God told Abraham to kill his only son and burn his body on a makeshift altar. But here, once again in the Bible, we are told that God demands the sacrifice of another only son … only this time it is GOD’S Son! How can a loving God do something like that? And can we really speak honestly and openly about such a terrifying experience in church? Who even wants to hear that stuff?...Read full sermon here (PDF)