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What is Palm Sunday?
Palm Sunday is the day that commemorates the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem. It is often celebrated by the blessing and distribution of palm branches, allowing people to take the spot of the crowd in the Gospel account watching the king pass them by into the place where it was prophesied he would sit on the throne forever. This is a beautifully upside-down day. The Lord fulfills his promise by sending a descendant of David to be the true king, but this kingly candidate looks far different from the one most people expected. However, the prophet Zechariah called the shot in Zechariah 9:9, and it is this prophesy that Matthew brings to the forefront in his Gospel account.
What is Maundy Thursday?
What is Maundy Thursday? No, it’s not “Monday Thursday” it’s Maundy Thursday. “Maundy” comes from a Latin word that means “mandate.” It’s on Maundy Thursday that Jesus gives a new mandate to his disciples before he goes to the cross. Jesus tells his disciples, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another just as I have loved you.” Jesus also gives a new meal and a new covenant to his disciples on Maundy Thursday. This is also the day we remember Jesus’ instituting the Lord’s Supper for his disciples. Jesus takes the age-old context of a Passover meal and gives something new to his disciples: his body and his blood in bread and wine for the forgiveness of sins. He tells them that as often as they eat and drink it, to do it in remembrance of him. Maundy Thursday is a day where we receive Jesus’ gifts and remember the story of his sacrificial love.
What is Good Friday?
Good Friday is the Friday before Easter on which we remember Jesus’ suffering and death on the cross. Now, you may be thinking to yourself, how can a day that commemorates someone’s suffering and death be called good? Well, for the Christian community, Good Friday is a crucial day of the year because it marks one of the most momentous occasions in all of human history. It was the moment that Jesus, God made flesh, made the ultimate sacrifice for the world, laying down his life and taking the punishment for all the world’s sin and brokenness. Though it’s still a dark day, we call it “good” because on that day, God enacted his plan to save the world in a powerful way.