From "Blessed is He" to "Crucify Him" in One Short Week


For many throughout the religious world, today is a day called “Palm Sunday,” a day man has set aside as the beginning of the Holy Week leading to “Good Friday” and “Easter Sunday.” For centuries, man has memorialized these days with special names and celebrations. While the events of the New Testament discuss these occasions, nowhere in the Bible are these terms found. As hard as it is to pinpoint the day of Jesus’s birth, it is likewise hard to set a definite day or week of His death. The so-called holiday of “Easter” varies wildly from sometime in March to sometime in April depending upon the vernal(spring) equinox.

Even though we do not know for sure when these events occurred, we know they are very  important in God’s plan for our salvation!  The Gospel writers let us know that a crowd had gathered, full of excitement, as Jesus approached Jerusalem. They lined the road as he slowly rode into the city on a donkey. As he proceeded through the town, we are told that the people spread their coats before Him, and  many took fresh green branches from the trees and laid them before Him. So, Jesus entered into Jerusalem on a freshly laid carpet of coats and tree branches.

The Pharisees were not happy. They were upset about what the people were shouting. Luke 19:38 tells us the people were rejoicing, praising God, and shouting: “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord!”  The Pharisees understood what was being shouted was a threat to their power. They understood the Scriptures, especially Psalm 118, a psalm that rejoices in the Lord’s triumph. They knew that Psalm 118:26 stated, “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!”  The Pharisees implored Jesus to stop the people from this celebration. They knew Jesus is the Messiah, and He had come to Jerusalem to save His people.

Remember the people wanted salvation and success. They wanted a king to march into Jerusalem and rid them of the Romans. They wanted to be free from oppression. They wanted a Savior to expel the Romans from their city.

Instead, what they got on the following Friday was a beaten, bloodied man in Roman custody, a man rejected by their own leaders, a man standing next to an infamous criminal called Barabbas. The sounds of the crowd had now changed from “Hosanna in the Highest” to “crucify Him, crucify Him.”

As we think about the harsh, cruel words hurled at our Savior, would we have been any different? Would we have added our voices to the crowd in mocking and insulting the Son of God? Jesus came to save sinners, sinners like us. How quickly things changed for Jesus. On Sunday after His crucifixion on Friday, Jesus came out of the grave and He lives forever. Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and our Savior, who came to earth to endure all that happened during that week.