A Week of Holy Observance

We are reaching the pinnacle of what some people call the Holy Week.

Last Sunday was considered Palm Sunday. That is the week before Easter that remembers Jesus triumphal entry into the city of Jerusalem.

Monday through Wednesday are considered Holy days. Many people recognize and remember certain events of the week before Jesus goes to the cross.

Today is Maundy Thursday. This is traditionally the day the Church remembers Jesus having the last supper. Jesus was celebrating the Passover and he changes it to a communion service.

Tomorrow is Good Friday. It is the day the Church remembers Jesus dying on the cross.

Finally is Holy Saturday. This is the full day that Jesus is in the tomb between two partial days. Many people set aside this day for prayer and fasting. A day of quiet observance of the death of our Lord Jesus.

Technically that is the end of the Holy Week and Sunday is the first day of a new week. Because western culture has a two-day weekend we usually lump Resurrection Sunday into the mix of Holy Week. Sunday is the day we recognize Jesus rising from the dead. It is often called Easter but there appears to be a connection to that name and a German goddess of spring. Traditionally it is the day the Church sets aside to remember the resurrection of Jesus.

Honestly, there are two things you need to know. First, we do not know the exact date that Jesus died. In fact, some scholars argue about whether Jesus died on Wednesday, Thursday or Friday. Second, the Bible never commands us to keep a Holy Week. This week was created by the Church to remember the greatest event in the history of faith. It is a best guess as to the time that the actual events happened.

While we are not required to keep this week it is a good opportunity to focus our attention on the great work of Jesus on the cross and the acceptance of that work by his resurrection. It is a great time to focus on the things of God for a few minutes and lay aside the things of this world.

I do not know what today or the rest of the week hold for you, but I pray you set aside a few minutes to quietly meditate on all God has done for you through Jesus, the cross and his resurrection.

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