Posts tagged Living Stones

Palm Sunday: A Tale of Two Processions

palm-sundayToday many churches celebrate Palm Sunday. Several years ago I read the book The Last Week by Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan. It tells the day by day account of the events of Holy Week through the Gospel of Mark. After many years of attending Palm Sunday services, this book had a profound affect on me. Jesus, again in his proper historical context, became more alive to me and made more sense to me. He became even more courageous to me.  Holy Week became much more meaningful to me. The book begins with Mark 11:1-11. The authors begin:

Two processions entered Jerusalem on a spring day in the year 30. One was a peasant procession, the other an imperial procession. From the east, Jesus rode a donkey down the Mount of Olives, cheered by his followers. Jesus was from the peasant village of Nazareth, his message was about the Kingdom of God, and his followers came from the peasant class…. On the opposite side of the city, from the west, Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor of Judea, entered Jerusalem at the head of a column of imperial cavalry and soldiers. Jesus’ procession proclaimed the Kingdom of God; Pilate’s proclaimed the power of empire and also Roman imperial theology. [Which was that the Pax Romana is achieved by the power, glory, and violence of the empire that ruled the world.] The two processions embody the central conflict of the week that led to Jesus’ crucifixion.

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