Reflections: Saturday the Fifth Week of Lent

April 1,  2023

Today’s Reading:  Introit for Holy Week Ps. 24:7-10; antiphon: Ps. 118:26

Daily Lectionary: Ex 7:1-25, Mark 16:1-20

Psalm 24:8: “Who is this King of glory? The LORD, strong and mighty, the LORD, mighty in battle!”

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. I can see why the crowds who gathered to cry Hosanna missed it.  Hosanna.. Save us. And He does. But we measure might differently than God does. The crowds went looking for war horses. Rebellion. Jesus rode a donkey into town to die. We know the schtick about strength being made perfect in weakness. But a little might now and then still sounds…not terrible. 

These devotions are always the same.  I love the forgiveness of sins, but it’s still in the back of my mind.  Why can’t the LORD go do battle with Alzheimers and ALS and cancer and everything else wrong? He does. We just don’t see it until the Resurrection. In Christ, cancer has claimed 0 lives.  In the cross, God remembers us even where we forget. We are engraved on the palms of His hands. On the last day, we’ll leap out of wheelchairs and tear out the oxygen tubes and run and not be weary. But today, the crowds cry Hosanna and still mean more than God intends to give. And it’s heartbreaking to hear the words “not yet” in the face of the things that are killing us.  

So Jesus rides into Jerusalem and doesn’t address the crowds. There aren’t words or explanations that will make the reasons behind our desperate prayers hurt less. Which is sort of why He rides into town, in might to die on a cross. Hurting is harder than not hurting. Jesus doesn’t ride into town to not hurt. Instead, He is mighty enough to suffer for you. For your desperate prayers that defy “not yet”, Jesus promises it is finished. He dares us to imagine the same.  You are mighty because in Him you are now strong enough to suffer. You are already bound to the victory, so you don’t need a path around the pain to get there. He makes you mighty. Might like the Lord’s doesn’t kneel to afflictions of today. It kneels to the God who drags us through them with all the same unstoppable force that drove Him through the crowds who cried Hosanna. Save us. He did. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.

Ride on, ride on in majesty! In lowly pomp ride on to die. O Christ, Thy triumphs now begin O’er captive death and conquered sin. (Ride On, Ride On in Majesty, LSB 441:2)

 Pastor Harrison Goodman is Content Executive for Higher Things.

Audio Reflections Speaker: Audio Reflections Speaker: Jonathan Lackey is an LCMS seminarian.

Study Christ’s words on the cross to see how you can show more Christlike grace in your life. Perfect for group or individual study, each chapter has a Q&A at the end, and the back of the book includes a leader guide. Available now from Concordia Publishing House.