After Jesus’ procession into Jerusalem, he continued to preach, teach—proclaiming God’s reign—those in power didn’t like it. Jesus was and is open to all who believe in God, God’s reign, God’s will for all creation.
Jesus spoke and did the greatest commandment, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind’ and a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’”
But there were and are those who believe in self power, self gain, and fear the change of being part of a world under God’s power alone, where there is love and compassion for all.
While dining with Simon the leper, a woman approached Jesus as he was at the table and poured a jar of expensive perfume over his head. Jesus told his disciples it was done to prepare him for burial.
Later, preparations were then made for Jesus and his disciples to gather for the Passover meal. As they were eating Jesus used the bread and cup to indicate his betrayer, Judas, and then they were used to establish the Last Supper.
In Gethsemane, Jesus, in pain and anguish, prayed not for the suffering to go away, but for strength to endure. Jesus was betrayed by a kiss from Judas and yet Jesus called him “friend.” Then all of Jesus’ disciples fled, they deserted him. Jesus was then unjustly accused. His disciple Peter denied him three times as Jesus predicted and the cock crowed.
Jesus was then tried. Pilate, the governor, found Jesus to be just, but does not defend him but sentenced him to be crucified upon a cross. The governor’s soldiers mocked and beat Jesus. And when Jesus was crucified, again he was mocked. A bystander offered him a sponge filled with sour wine.
Women who were Jesus’ followers looked on at a distance. And then with a cry, he died. Jesus died so all of us, no matter who we are, where we are in our lives, would be saved, so all of us are the reason of his death. God loves us so much.
It was three days later that God raises Jesus from the dead. Jesus knew this would happen. He repeatedly told his disciples that it would happen. Through Jesus, death is overcome and all of us can live in God’s reign forever…just trust and believe in him. This is the celebration of Easter!