Wednesday Morning: 13 Feb 2019 – John 12:12-33 ~ We want to meet Jesus.

Wednesday Morning

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen

Opening (Collect for Purity)

Almighty God: to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid; cleanse the thoughts of my heart through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, that I may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy name, through Christ my Lord. Amen.
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Morning Reading – John 12:12-33 (NLT)

Jesus’ Triumphant Entry

The next day, the news that Jesus was on the way to Jerusalem swept through the city. A large crowd of Passover visitors took palm branches and went down the road to meet him. They shouted,

“Praise God! Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Hail to the King of Israel!”

Jesus found a young donkey and rode on it, fulfilling the prophecy that said:

“Don’t be afraid, people of Jerusalem. Look, your King is coming, riding on a donkey’s colt.”

His disciples didn’t understand at the time that this was a fulfillment of prophecy. But after Jesus entered into his glory, they remembered what had happened and realized that these things had been written about him.

Many in the crowd had seen Jesus call Lazarus from the tomb, raising him from the dead, and they were telling others about it. That was the reason so many went out to meet him—because they had heard about this miraculous sign. Then the Pharisees said to each other, “There’s nothing we can do. Look, everyone has gone after him!”

Jesus Predicts His Death

Some Greeks who had come to Jerusalem for the Passover celebration paid a visit to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee. They said, “Sir, we want to meet Jesus.” Philip told Andrew about it, and they went together to ask Jesus.

Jesus replied, “Now the time has come for the Son of Man to enter into his glory. I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat is planted in the soil and dies, it remains alone. But its death will produce many new kernels—a plentiful harvest of new lives. Those who love their life in this world will lose it. Those who care nothing for their life in this world will keep it for eternity. Anyone who wants to serve me must follow me, because my servants must be where I am. And the Father will honor anyone who serves me.

“Now my soul is deeply troubled. Should I pray, ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But this is the very reason I came! Father, bring glory to your name.”

Then a voice spoke from heaven, saying, “I have already brought glory to my name, and I will do so again.” When the crowd heard the voice, some thought it was thunder, while others declared an angel had spoken to him.

Then Jesus told them, “The voice was for your benefit, not mine. The time for judging this world has come, when Satan, the ruler of this world, will be cast out. And when I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw everyone to myself.” He said this to indicate how he was going to die.
__________

Morning Reflection:

Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem was certainly sensational. Jesus himself orchestrated the event that he knew would put him on a collision course with the religious authorities. Palm Sunday began Jesus’ journey to the resurrection.

Everyone wanted to see Jesus, but how many would follow him?

Jesus attracted a huge crowd, but what were they hoping to see?

+ The promised King of Israel – the one who would throw off Roman rule, and resurrect the Davidic Kingdom?
+ The miracle worker – the one who raised Lazarus from the dead, and even Lazarus himself in the parade?

Everyone wanted to see Jesus, but who were they?

+ The crowd – Passover visitors who heard the news and came out to see what was going on.
+ The curious – Greek Jews in town for Passover, who wanted to meet Jesus personally.
+ The committed – Disciples, and close friends, who believed in Jesus, but had no idea where all this would lead.

And how many would follow Jesus to the end?

Those who love their life in this world will lose it.
Those who care nothing for their life in this world will keep it for eternity.
Anyone who wants to serve me must follow me,
because my servants must be where I am.
And the Father will honor anyone who serves me.
– John 12:25-26

Ordinarily, Palm Sunday is a cause for celebration and rejoicing. But John’s account and the subsequent reading leaves me with a profound sense of sadness – sadness for Satan’s grip on this world, sadness for the clueless people he came to save, sadness for the necessity of Jesus having to endure the torturous cross, and sadness for every disciple who takes up his/her own cross and follows Jesus – it’s not an easy path to follow. But it is the path that leads to eternal life.

“Now my soul is deeply troubled.
Should I pray, ‘Father, save me from this hour’?
But this is the very reason I came! Father, bring glory to your name.”
– John 12:27-28

Questions for consideration:

  • What do you expect from Jesus? Please explain.
  • Can you remember when you first met Jesus? Please explain.
  • What would it mean for you to “care nothing for [your] life in this world?” What would you lose? Please explain.
  • Can you remember a time when you followed Jesus down a path that didn’t want to go? Please explain.

__________

Morning Prayer:

Lord Jesus: Less of me, and more of you. Give me the courage of my convictions – that, empowered by your Spirit, I may walk in your footsteps and carry the cross you have given me – all to the honor of your Name. Amen.
__________

“Lead Me to the Cross” – Hillsong

__________

Closing:

May the peace of the Lord Christ go with you, wherever He may send you. May He guide you through the wilderness, and protect you through the storm. May He bring you home rejoicing at the wonders He has shown you. May He bring you home rejoicing once again into our doors.

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen



Categories: Life in Christ

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