Palm Sunday and Sunday of the Passion: 5th and Last Sunday in Lent +

 

Watchword from the gospel of St. John: “The Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.” (3:14b-15)

Introit Psalm 69

 

God’s holy Word from the prophet Isaiah the fiftieth chapter: The Sovereign LORD has given me an instructed tongue, to know the word that sustains the weary. He wakens me morning by morning, wakens my ear to listen like one being taught.  The Sovereign LORD has opened my ears, and I have not been rebellious; I have not drawn back. I offered my back to those who beat me, my cheeks to those who pulled out my beard; I did not hide my face from mocking and spitting.  Because the Sovereign LORD helps me, I will not be disgraced. Therefore have I set my face like flint, and I know I will not be put to shame.  He who vindicates me is near. Who then will bring charges against me? Let us face each other! Who is my accuser? Let him confront me! It is the Sovereign LORD who helps me. Who is he that will condemn me? They will all wear out like a garment; the moths will eat them up. (Verses 4-9)

The epistle of St. Paul to the Philippians the second chapter:  Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:  Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,  but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.  And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death– even death on a cross! Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name,  that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (5-11)

The holy Gospel accourding to the evangelist St. John the twelfth chapter: The next day the great crowd that had come for the Feast heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem.  They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting, “Hosanna!” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Blessed is the King of Israel!”  Jesus found a young donkey and sat upon it, as it is written,  “Do not be afraid, O Daughter of Zion; see, your king is coming, seated on a donkey’s colt.” At first his disciples did not understand all this. Only after Jesus was glorified did they realize that these things had been written about him and that they had done these things to him.  Now the crowd that was with him when he called Lazarus from the tomb and raised him from the dead continued to spread the word. Many people, because they had heard that he had given this miraculous sign, went out to meet him. So the Pharisees said to one another, “See, this is getting us nowhere. Look how the whole world has gone after him!” (12-19)

The sermon is based on the holy Gospel of the evangelist St.Mark the fourteenth chapter: And being in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, as he sat at meat, there came a woman having an alabaster box of ointment of spikenard very precious; and she brake the box, and poured it on his head. And there were some that had indignation within themselves, and said, Why was this waste of the ointment made? For it might have been sold for more than three hundred pence, and have been given to the poor. And they murmured against her. And Jesus said, Let her alone; why trouble ye her? she hath wrought a good work on me. For ye have the poor with you always, and whensoever ye will ye may do them good: but me ye have not always. She hath done what she could: she is come aforehand to anoint my body to the burying. Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world, this also that she hath done shall be spoken of for a memorial of her. (3-9)

 The liturgical colour is violet.

A collect for this Sunday: O God, holy and eternal, you permit us to enter into the fellowship of that holy suffering by which your dear Son, our Saviour, conquered sin and death. Grant that we may celebrate the remembrance of his passion with true devotion, accept the cross as his disciples, and thus fulfill your holy will; through IX our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit – one God now and forever. (Dobberstein Pg. 83)

Hymn of the week:  “A Lamb Goes Uncomplaining Forth” by Paul Gerhardt, 1607-1676

If you are called to preach this weekend, may the triune God give you joy and strength, enthusiasm and wisdom, knowledge and insight – and the true words and pictures to preach his holy will faithfully accourding to his most precious revelation of his will and promises in both the Old and New Testament! However, if you are not preaching, but listening – then listen as if God is talking to you + His precious gospel is “the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes.” (Romans 1:16f)

About Wilhelm Weber jr

Rector of the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Tshwane
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