It can take your breath away. The spectacular vista from the Mt of Olives, overlooking Jerusalem, is a mix of modern and ancient. From the top of that mount, we walked down the narrow, curving, stone paved street that marked the path of the triumphal entry of Jesus into the city. I found it easy to imagine the drama that would have marked the beginning of what we now call Holy Week.
When you read the accounts in the Gospels, the scenes varied from day to day: from the adoration of crowds to anger at the money changers, from preaching at the Temple to weeping for Jerusalem, from teaching His disciples to firing up the Pharisees, from celebrating communion with his friends to pouring his heart out alone in a Garden called Gethsemane. Jesus’ last week was full of drama.
He rode into Jerusalem on a white donkey- the symbol of a victorious king.
He cleansed the Temple, in His role as priest.
He taught and warned the people about the things to come, as a prophet.
In the Upper Room, He was the first among brothers, yet the servant who washed their feet.
At the cross, this suffering Servant gave His life as a ransom for many, and took care of His mother.
And that glorious day of the empty tomb gives us the promise of life with Him forever.
He was worshiped, hailed, angered, goaded, tempted, betrayed, rejected, disowned by his friend and forsaken by His Father. He went from most liked to most despised. A week of ups and downs for any person, He walked through every moment of it without blemish, without sin, in synch with the Father, perfect obedience.
15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin.
If there is any heavenly empathy for the drama of our lives here, it’s with Jesus. If there is any grace or mercy to be found, it is with Jesus. By His death and resurrection, He has made a way for us into the very throne room of heaven, where we are always welcome. For all the everyday dramas we experience, He is with us and has provided us access to the greatest help available.
16 Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
He’s been here. He knows. He cares. He will make a way. He already has.
Hebrews 4:15,16. NIV, Zondervan. Read more about Jesus' last week before His death