Passion Week Readings | Palm Sunday

Each day this week leading up to Easter Sunday, we are providing you with some readings and events that directly correspond to what was happening this week in the life of Jesus 2,000 years ago. We encourage you to take time to enter into the story that so clearly illuminates God’s plan for redemption, and meditate on how the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ permeates and influences your daily interactions and experiences. Then join us next weekend as we celebrate the mighty work that Christ has done on our behalf and the hope of our glorious inheritance in Him.

After telling this story, Jesus went on toward Jerusalem, walking ahead of his disciples. As he came to the towns of Bethphage and Bethany on the Mount of Olives, he sent two disciples ahead. “Go into that village over there,” he told them. “As you enter it, you will see a young donkey tied there that no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here. If anyone asks, ‘Why are you untying that colt?’ just say, ‘The Lord needs it.’”

So they went and found the colt, just as Jesus had said. And sure enough, as they were untying it, the owners asked them, “Why are you untying that colt?”

And the disciples simply replied, “The Lord needs it.” So they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their garments over it for him to ride on.

As he rode along, the crowds spread out their garments on the road ahead of him. When he reached the place where the road started down the Mount of Olives, all of his followers began to shout and sing as they walked along, praising God for all the wonderful miracles they had seen.

“Blessings on the King who comes in the name of the Lord!

Peace in heaven, and glory in highest heaven!”But some of the Pharisees among the crowd said, “Teacher, rebuke your followers for saying things like that!”

He replied, “If they kept quiet, the stones along the road would burst into cheers!”

But as he came closer to Jerusalem and saw the city ahead, he began to weep. “How I wish today that you of all people would understand the way to peace. But now it is too late, and peace is hidden from your eyes. Before long your enemies will build ramparts against your walls and encircle you and close in on you from every side. They will crush you into the ground, and your children with you. Your enemies will not leave a single stone in place, because you did not recognize it when God visited you.”

— Luke 19:28-44


Palm Sunday at a Glance

• Jesus, at the Mount of Olives, sends two disciples to retrieve a donkey and her colt, makes his “triumphal entry” into Jerusalem, and later weeps over Jerusalem (Matthew 21:1-11; Mark 11:1-10; Luke 19:28-44; John 12:12-18).
• Some Greeks seek Jesus (John 12:20-36).
• Jesus enters the temple area, then returns to Bethany (Mark 11:11; Matthew 21:17).

You can download a full timeline of events for the upcoming week here.

Music is an important part of reflection and worship. As you spend some time reflecting on this text and these events, we encourage you to listen to these hymns over the next few days as we lead up to Maundy Thursday.