Palm Sunday is approaching. Christians celebrate this day as a reminder of Jesus riding into Jerusalem on a young colt as the crowds waved palm branches and threw down their cloaks in front of him. They shouted praises to God for sending them a King. My favorite depiction is found in Luke Chapter 19 because it is here that Jesus tells the Pharisees that if the people keep quiet, even the stones will cry out (v 40). It is difficult to comprehend how, in a matter of days, the same crowd would be shouting, “Crucify him! Crucify him!”.
At the center of Christianity we are forced to face the cross of Jesus Christ. The only man who ever lived a life that was perfect in every way possible, died the most horrible death imaginable. There was a time in my life when I thought the above passage from John simply meant that Jesus had died – which in fact he did. However, the word finished is the same as paid in full. Everything that Jesus did centered around God’s plan for salvation. Christ became the final and ultimate sacrifice for sin. He took my place (and yours) on that cross. As I sit here writing, the words from a wonderful Christian song entitled O Come to the Alter are running through my head, “… forgiveness was bought with the precious blood of Jesus Christ.” I encourage you, read further in John’s gospel and discover the true meaning of Easter, the resurrected Christ.