Sunday 24th March 2024
The extravagant love of God deserves extravagant worship
  • Isaiah 50:4-7
  • Psalm 22:8-9,17-20,23-24
  • Philippians 2:6-11
  • Mark 14:1--15:47

Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Jesus the King of Kings, the Lord of Lords, enters Jerusalem seated on a donkey’s colt. Thus we see the scene set for Holy Week, it is dramatic, unexpected and full of contradictions. The crowd is jubilant in praise, shouting hosanna, which means “now save”. The Lord Jesus enters like a conquering King to their shouts and adulations, yet he rides a donkey, an animal reserved for ordinary people. He is the Servant King, who comes to redeem humanity.

In the first reading the prophet Isaiah reveals the mind of the suffering servant of the Lord. Jesus had an intimate relationship with the Father. He knew the Father loved him and he trusted the Father absolutely. This gave him the courage to face the traumatic events that were about to unfold. Beginning on Palm Sunday and building in intensity, we are drawn into the unfolding drama playing out over Holy Week and which climaxes on the dawn of Easter Sunday. As events unfold we can ask ourselves, where do I stand in this unfolding drama? Am I in the crowd shouting out Jesus’ name in praise while looking for healings and miracles yet not truly committing my life to him? Am I like Judas, having betrayed others or Jesus? Or like Peter have I denied knowing the Lord Jesus? Do I judge and condemn others like the Pharisees and Sanhedrin? Do I wash my hands and conscience of responsibility like Pilate? Or am I like Mary who broke the alabaster jar of perfume in worship to the Lord?

The second reading reveals to us that the Lord Jesus though equal in divinity to Abba Father humbled himself completely. He obediently accepted the humiliation of the cross. He died in obedience to the will of the Father, and God raised him in glory. His name now stands above them all. God shows that true greatness consists of love that is willing to pour itself out for others. God humbles himself for us. The Lord Jesus’ victory was his self-giving reckless love on the cross. This opened for us the road to redemption.

Mary shows us an appropriate response we can offer in the face of this extravagant love of God: extravagant worship. It is costly, it is precious, it is vulnerable, it is complete abandonment, and it is the breaking and the pouring of all she had on the Lord. In this Holy week as we journey with the Lord let us open our hearts in extravagant worship as we accept and thank him for his precious gift to us.

PRAYER: Abba Father, thank you for your extravagant love for me. Reveal yourself to me in a deeper way as I worship you. Amen.

View All