Keyword Search

  • Buy Direct from CSS Publishing Company
    Buy Direct from CSS Publishing Company

    Buy Direct from CSS Publishing Company

    Buy Direct from CSS Publishing Company

    Buy Direct from CSS Publishing Company

Monday of Holy Week

John 12:1-11

Monday of Holy Week is introduced with this account that is only in the Fourth Gospel, about an anointing of the feet of Jesus by Mary, the sister of Martha and of Lazarus, whom Jesus, according to John 11:1-44, had resurrected from the dead. The account makes a major contribution to the plot of the Fourth Gospel, with Jesus speaking in support of what Mary was doing and in opposition to Judas Iscariot, who was complaining about the pouring of the expensive perfume on the feet of Jesus when the perfume could have been sold and the proceeds given to the poor. The statement of the Johannine Jesus that “you are always going to have poor people with you whom you can help, but you are not always going to have me” presents the greatest challenge for us even today. It raises fundamental questions about how the financial resources of a congregation should be allocated.

Hebrews 9:11-15

The writer of the Epistle to the Hebrews presents Jesus in a way that is very different from the ways in which Jesus is depicted elsewhere in our New Testament documents. Within each of the Four Gospels Jesus is opposed by the priests who manage the Temple under contracts purchased from the Romans; he is certainly not presented as the honored priest entering into the Holiest Place in the Temple to offer his own blood to God. This very different way in which Jesus was portrayed by the writer of this document was a major reason that the Epistle to the Hebrews was one of the last documents to be accepted into the New Testament canon.

Isaiah 42:1-9

By using this “Servant of the Lord” text, as it is designated by Christians, on the Monday of Holy Week, we are identifying the Servant of the Isaiah traditions with Jesus as we as Christians perceive him. That identification, of course, does not give ownership of the Servant concept to us as Christians. The Servant of the Lord still primarily belongs to the Jews, not to us as Christians. The statements in this text about God putting the Spirit of God upon the Servant in order that the Servant may establish justice on the earth in a sense unites Christians with Jews, since, when we are at our best, we as Christians, together with Jews, long for justice and work together to “repair” the world and to be righteous and just in all that we and Jews do.

Psalm 36:5-11

Here also, when we as Christians use this psalm, or any of the psalms, or any portion of the Older Testament for that matter, ideally we use these materials together with Jews, as devotional guides along with Jews, even during our so-called Holy Week. Although our experiences and our understandings of the intended meanings of the texts in the Older Testament are different from those of Jews, we must remember that these were Israelite and Jewish documents before we began to use them and that they remain basically Jewish documents today.

Leave a Reply

Get LSN Delivered to your Inbox for FREE!
First Name:
Last Name:
  • SermonSuite Special
    Mary Austin
    The Devil Is Quick
    Luke 4:1-13
    When I visit a nursing home near my church, I stop to say hello to the receptionist as I sign in. “How are you?” I ask her, and she always gives the same answer with a charming smile and a lilt in her voice, suggesting that she is not defeated by her answer. “The devil is busy,” she says. I had never heard this phrase before she taught it to me, and I find her answer charming. When we look at the sorrows of the world and the messes we get ourselves into, it’s easy to imagine a busy devil stirring up trouble behind the scenes. 
         The devil, the personification of the forces of evil, is certainly busy with Jesus, as we find Jesus in the wilderness at the beginning of his public life. Just after his baptism the Spirit leads Jesus into the wilderness, and the devil gets busy tempting him for the whole time he’s there. 
          A deeply spiritual life is its own kind of wilderness in a full and busy world. The things that connect us to God are time and space, and most of our lives suffer from a shortage of both. Like Jesus, our temptations come in the form of a quick way out. Each temptation offers Jesus the power to take a shortcut -- and if he’s tempted, we are even more so....more
    Behold The Man Who Was Tempted As We Are
    A man who owned a small town grocery store saw a little boy come in one afternoon. The little fellow stood near the front door looking at a barrel of apples. He would look up at the man and back down at the apples. Finally, the man went over and said to him, "Son, are you trying to steal one of those apples?" The boy replied, "No, sir. I'm trying to keep from it."
         There are times in our lives when we are tempted to be less than we are. There are times when we are faced with the possibility of settling for less than the best; when we are more concerned with reaching goals than how we reach them; when we think that all that matters is results.
         Today is the First Sunday of Lent. On these Sundays we will be thinking about Jesus heading toward Jerusalem. As we do this, I remind you of the words of Pilate as Jesus...more
    Wayne Brouwer
    Love that hurts
    The story is told of a young girl whose very best friend lived just down the street. They were playmates and almost sisters, with visits back and forth nearly every day.
         When Jennifer was killed in an automobile accident, Tracie and her family were drawn through the same trench of grief. Two families were heartbroken and shared the awful blackness of funeral clothing together.
         The day after the funeral, Tracie disappeared for a few hours. Her mother was worried and searched the house and yard in growing concern. When she went out to the street in front of their home she saw Tracie at a distance, slowly meandering toward her on the sidewalk, oblivious to her surroundings....more
    Peter Andrew Smith
    In the Wilderness
    Luke 4:1-13

    Sid wandered into the hotel restaurant and picked up the menu. He wasn’t really hungry at this late hour but there was nothing on television and nothing for him to do until the morning. He took a seat and considered his choices.
         “What’s good?” he asked the waiter.
         “Pretty much everything.” The waiter pointed at a few selections. “Personally I like the fried platter or the burger with the works.”
         Sid scanned the options. “I think I’ll go with the chicken sandwich.”
         “Fries with that or a salad?”...more
    Janice Scott
    Thanking God Appropriately
    As a young and relatively newly qualified physiotherapist, I was privileged to treat an elderly, retired doctor who had suffered a severe stroke. He was paralysed down one side of his body and his speech was affected, but over the course of a number of months some movement returned so that he was able to walk and his speech became almost normal again....more
    Cynthia Cowen
    Your Greatest Treasurer
    Object: a piggy bank
    The Point: Your greatest treasure is not laid up on earth but in heaven
    The Lesson: Good morning, boys and girls. Thank you for joining me as we share God’s word together. This is my piggy bank. (show the piggy bank) Yes, I have a piggy bank. I think everyone should have one. When I come home at the end of the day, I place my pocket change in this bank....more

Author of
Lectionary Scripture Notes
Mark Ellingsen is professor at the Interdenominational Theological Center in Atlanta, Georgia
Dr. Mark Ellingsen

Great Links