Hello, Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Zechariah 9:9 says "Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout in triumph, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; He is just and endowed with salvation, Humble, and mounted on a donkey, Even on a cold, the foal of a donkey." (NASB). Before we get too much further into Passion Week, I want to revisit what some might consider a misnomer we often find on our Bibles. Misnomer comes from a French word that means “to wrongly name.” Remember back a few days ago with me on Palm Sunday when we set our feet in the dusty streets of Jerusalem and shouted as Jesus rode into the city “humble and mounted on a donkey.”
Does anyone remember the two words that appear in most of our English Bibles as the heading over the passages of Scripture? (Matthew 21-1-17, Mark 11:1-11, Luke 19:28-40, John 12:12-19) Here is the misnomer: “Triumphal Entry” These subheads, mind you, are not the Word of God. They are rather the work of translators and editors. This triumphal could be the wrong word, maybe “humble entry” or “prophetic entry” could be better.
Entries matter a lot. Just in case we entered this week with any notion of triumphal, as in “ We Will Rock You,” in our spirits there’s still time to run back outside the city gates and come in again, crawling this time.
Passion week is the annual invitation to become disoriented by the holy love of God, shaken to the core of our comfortable being, and dispossessed of sentimental illusions about grace. For all practical purposes, a different heading for this entry could be “Hell Week.” This is the week that the very gates of hell were opened, unleashing all hell on the Son of God. Remember that time in the desert when we were told that, after unsuccessfully unseating Jesus with the temptations, “he left him until an opportune time.” (Luke 4:13)?
This is that time. This is the week when we get shaken to our core and feel the love of Christ for us. Don’t bunny hop from Palm Sunday to Easter joy without walking through this tough week.