Passion Week Chronology

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Each year during Passion Week, I enjoy looking at the events day-by-day. Spending a few minutes each day to see what Jesus was doing gives me new insight and a different perspective of Him leading up to the crucifixion and resurrection. The links below show what events occur on each day and provide either the texts or links to the texts associated with the events:

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The Lion and the Lamb

On Palm Sunday, we are used to seeing all the little people in the church parading through the isles with palm branches while the worship team plays “Hosanna”. This is a day of joy, one where we remember the triumphal entry of Jesus to Jerusalem; the throngs cheering for him in expectation of great things to come.

However, Jesus sees a different side of things. He knows what is coming; he has been telling his followers about it for weeks. He understands what is happening… and what will happen in the week to come. He knows that in a few short days, his ministry will be at an end; his purpose for coming to earth will be fulfilled; his glory will come to fruition.

But that’s next week. Today, Jesus is arriving in Jerusalem, a journey he has made many times in his life, but this one is different. All eyes are on him…

For those who believe him to be the messiah, his entry is prophetic (Luke 19:37–38). He is finally coming to bring salvation from the Roman oppression. The golden age of Israel is near…

For those who deny him, this is the last straw. He has been teaching against the priesthood for years. He allows defiance and heresy from those that follow him (Luke 19:37–40), and has even claims divinity. The guy is nuts and dangerous; stirring up the population to conflict with the Romans. Things don’t need to change and they are finished putting up with him (Luke 19:47–48).

For Jesus… today is bitter-sweet. His chosen people; those who were set aside to bless the world; He grieves because they’ve ignored the prophets and do not see what is happening in front of their own eyes (Luke 19:41–44). He knows how this will end because he planned it this way, but it doesn’t stop the pain and sorrow of his coming betrayal.

The perfect lamb is walking into the jaws of the lion because he understands what is at stake and is both willing and able to fix everything…

ADVENT: Born to Die

What follows is an excerpt from The Story of Reality—How the World Began, How It Ends, and Everything Important that Happens in Between by Greg Koukl.


I want you to think for a moment about what the Story says about Christmas. Now when I say “Christmas,” I am not speaking of any of those things that usually come to mind when you think about the birth of Christ. I do not want you to think, for example, about shepherds or wise men or stables or mangers or anything like that. Those things all have their place, but they have nothing at all to do with my point.

I am talking about something in the Story you probably have never noticed. I want you to consider the most important Christmas verse in the Story that you will never see on a Christmas card, and you will never hear in a Christmas pageant because it is not in the accounts of Jesus’ birth at all. In fact, it does not appear anywhere in the record of His life. Instead, you find it in a dark and foreboding passage that speaks of blood and sacrifice and death. It is a section of the Story recounting a ghastly, grisly system of slaughter where bulls and goats were bled out, their innocent lives forfeit on behalf of others who were the guilty ones.

Now, I think it is obvious to just about everyone that animals can never really pay for people at all. The system of sacrifice God gave to the Hebrews, as important as it was, served only as a kind of sop, a temporary measure to cover man’s moral wound for the moment. It would never do in the long run, and it was not meant to. No, man owes the debt, and in the long run man, not creatures, must pay. And only a sinless man—someone with no debt of his own—could cover the debt of another. And only a man who was more than a man could ever pay for the sins of multitudes.

And this brings us to the most important Christmas verse you will never hear on Christmas. Here it is:

Therefore, when Christ came into the world, He said: “Sacrifice and offering You did not desire, but a body You prepared for Me; with burnt offerings and sin offerings You were not pleased. Then I said, ‘Here I am—it is written about Me in the scroll—I have come to do Your will, O God.’” (Heb. 10:5-7 NIV)

Note the opening words of this passage: “When Christ came into the world….” The Story is saying that on that first Christmas, in some incredible way the eternal Son of God in a baby’s body said to His Father, “Here I am. I will do as You have asked. I accept the body You have prepared for Me, the body that will bleed out in perfect payment for sin.”

And this is the answer to our question. This is why Jesus came to earth. God’s Son surrendered His sinless human self to be the future unblemished offering to perfectly and completely save sinners.

read more here…

ADVENT: Hark, the Herald Angels Sing

Advent means “coming”. We get our word from the Latin “adventus” which is a translation of the Greek “parousia”, which is commonly used to refer to the Second Coming of Christ. For followers of Jesus, the season of Advent anticipates the coming of Christ from two different perspectives. The season offers the opportunity to share in the ancient longing for the coming of the Messiah, and to be alert for his Second Coming.

This year, I want to share a few of the hymns that my family sing to help us focus on the season and bring us closer to the King of Kings who humbled himself to save us all from our rebellious hearts.



Although penned by Charles Wesley in in 1737, this carol did not become what it is today without two unwanted changes. Wesley originally wrote the first line to read “Hark! how all the welkin rings, glory to the King of Kings.” Welkin literally means the “vault of heaven makes a long noise.” It was set to one of Wesley’s melodies and gained favor throughout the Methodist movement. However, when published by his friend, George Whitefield, the first lyric was changed to “Hark? the herald angels sing” without his knowledge. Wesley was mortified at the change and refused to sing it to his dying day.

In 1855, William Cummings took a tune written by Felix Mendelssohn in tribute to Johann Gutenberg “Festgesang an die Knustler”, and combined it with the Whitefield rewrite, creating the carol that we love today. Although not exactly what Wesley had wanted it to be, “Hark! the Herald Angels Sing” still retains his intended Scriptural integrity and deep meaning.

Hark! The herald angels sing
“Glory to the newborn king;
Peace on earth and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled”
Joyful all ye nations rise,
Join the triumph of the skies
With the angelic host proclaim
“Christ is born in Bethlehem”
Hark! The herald angels sing
“Glory to the newborn king.”
Christ, by highest heaven adored
Christ, the everlasting Lord,
Late in time behold Him come
Offspring of a Virgin’s womb:
Veiled in flesh the Godhead see,
Hail the incarnate Deity
Pleased as man with man to dwell
Jesus, our Emmanuel
Hark! The herald angels sing
“Glory to the newborn king.”
Hail the Heaven-born Prince of Peace!
Hail the Sun of Righteousness!
Light and life to all He brings,
Risen with healing in His wings;
Mild He lays His glory by
Born that man no more may die
Born to raise the sons of earth
Born to give them second birth
Hark! The herald angels sing
“Glory to the newborn king.”

ADVENT: O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

Advent means “coming”. We get our word from the Latin “adventus” which is a translation of the Greek “parousia”, which is commonly used to refer to the Second Coming of Christ. For followers of Jesus, the season of Advent anticipates the coming of Christ from two different perspectives. The season offers the opportunity to share in the ancient longing for the coming of the Messiah, and to be alert for his Second Coming.

This year, I want to share a few of the hymns that my family sing to help us focus on the season and bring us closer to the King of Kings who humbled himself to save us all from our rebellious hearts.



While reviewing scripture-based writings, John Mason Neale came across a Latin chant of unknown authorship. Much more than the simple, almost monotone, melodies employed during the earlier centuries of the Church, these words painted a rich illustration of the many biblical prophecies fulfilled by Christ’s birth.

Seizing on the importance of the song’s inspired text, Neale translated the words to English and set them to a fifteenth century processional. Although it has been translated into scores of languages and sung in wildly differing styles and arrangements, the simplistic yet spiritual nature of the song remains intact. It is reverent, a tribute to not only the birth of God’s son, but also the fulfillment of God’s promise to deliver His children from the world.

O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here,
Until the Son of God appear.
O come, Thou Rod of Jesse, free
Thine own from Satan’s tyranny ;
From depths of hell Thy people save,
And give them victory o’er the grave.
O come, Thou Dayspring, from on high,
And cheer us by Thy drawing nigh;
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night,
And death’s dark shadows put to flight.
O come, Thou Wisdom from on high,
And order all things, far and nigh;
To us the path of knowledge show,
And cause us in her ways to go.
O come, Desire of nations, bind
In one the hearts of all mankind;
Bid Thou our sad divisions cease,
And be Thyself our King of Peace.

ADVENT: Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus

Advent means “coming”. We get our word from the Latin “adventus” which is a translation of the Greek “parousia”, which is commonly used to refer to the Second Coming of Christ. For followers of Jesus, the season of Advent anticipates the coming of Christ from two different perspectives. The season offers the opportunity to share in the ancient longing for the coming of the Messiah, and to be alert for his Second Coming.

This year, I want to share a few of the hymns that my family sing to help us focus on the season and bring us closer to the King of Kings who humbled himself to save us all from our rebellious hearts.



This morning’s sermon was on the hope of justice. It seems fitting that I had picked this hymn for today’s post.

“Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus” was written in 1744 by Charles Wesley. As he was looking at the situation of orphans around him, he adapted his thoughts on Haggai 2:7 and a published prayer of the time into this beautiful hymn.

‘I will shake all nations, and what is desired by all nations will come, and I will fill this house with glory,’ says the Lord Almighty. Haggai 2:7

Verse 1
Come, Thou long expected Jesus, Born to set Thy people free,
From our fears and sins release us, Let us find our rest in Thee:
Israel’s strength and consolation, Hope of all the earth Thou art,
Dear Desire of every nation, Joy of every longing heart.

Verse 2
Born Thy people to deliver, Born a child and yet a king,
Born to reign in us for ever, Now Thy gracious kingdom bring:
By Thy own eternal Spirit Rule in all our hearts alone,
By Thy all-sufficient merit Raise us to Thy glorious throne.

On this, the second Sunday of Advent, we anticipate the justice promised to us by our God. This is the “parousia” aspect of Advent, when we see the world around us and take comfort in the future peace that scripture lays out for us. We even have a promise and it’s fulfillment:

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion — to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor. Isaiah 61:1-3

“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” Luke 4:18-21

Through Jesus, we can see the truth of God’s justice. We are able to rest in the promises of things to come based on the revelation that we have.

ADVENT: Of the Father’s Love Begotten

Advent means “coming”. We get our word from the Latin “adventus” which is a translation of the Greek “parousia”, which is commonly used to refer to the Second Coming of Christ. For followers of Jesus, the season of Advent anticipates the coming of Christ from two different perspectives. The season offers the opportunity to share in the ancient longing for the coming of the Messiah, and to be alert for his Second Coming.

This year, I want to share a few of the hymns that my family sing to help us focus on the season and bring us closer to the King of Kings who humbled himself to save us all from our rebellious hearts.



Today is the first Sunday of Advent and I want to share a song that beautifully combines both perspectives of our anticipation.

Of the Father’s Love Begotten” is based on a Latin poem whose form that is in most hymnals today, was translated by John Mason Neale in 1851.

The original poem was a treatise against a heresy within the church during the life of its author, Aurelius Prudentius Clemens (348-c. 413). During his lifetime, the Arian heresy was alive and well. There were many Christians who believed that before his incarnation, Jesus was created by God and therefore Jesus did not exist through all time. Jesus was a creature (“created being”) that, though divine, was not equal to the Father.Prudentius, who was a lawyer and eventually became a judge, used his legal skills to pen in poetic form what would eventually become the orthodox understanding of the Trinity.


1. Of the Father’s love begotten,
Ere the worlds began to be,
He is Alpha and Omega,
He the source, the ending He,
Of the things that are, that have been,
And that future years shall see,
Evermore and evermore!
2. This is He Whom seers in old time
Chanted of with one accord;
Whom the voices of the prophets
Promised in their faithful word;
Now He shines, the long expected,
Let creation praise its Lord,
Evermore and evermore!
3. O that birth forever blessèd,
When the virgin, full of grace,
By the Holy Ghost conceiving,
Bore the Saviour of our race;
And the Babe, the world’s Redeemer,
First revealed His sacred face,
evermore and evermore!
4. O ye heights of heaven adore Him;
Angel hosts, His praises sing;
Powers, dominions, bow before Him,
and extol our God and King!
Let no tongue on earth be silent,
Every voice in concert sing,
Evermore and evermore!
5. Christ, to Thee with God the Father,
And, O Holy Ghost, to Thee,
Hymn and chant with high thanksgiving,
And unwearied praises be:
Honour, glory, and dominion,
And eternal victory,
Evermore and evermore!

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (John 1:1)

“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.” (Revelation 1:8)

For from him and through him and for him are all things. To him be the glory forever! Amen. (Romans 11:36)

I will proclaim the Lord’s decree: He said to me, “You are my son; today I have become your father. (Psalm 2:7)

“This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.” (1 John  4:9)

The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. (Luke 1:35)

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)

Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. (Isaiah 60:1)

He said to them, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.” (Luke 24:44)

All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name. (Acts 10:43)

Sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done marvelous things; his right hand and his holy arm have worked salvation for him. (Psalm 98:1)

And they sang a new song, saying: “You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased for God persons from every tribe and language and people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.” Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand. They encircled the throne and the living creatures and the elders. In a loud voice they were saying: “Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!” Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, saying: “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!” The four living creatures said, “Amen,” and the elders fell down and worshiped. (Revelation 5:9-14)