Sunday, April 5, 2020

The Sunday Lectionary Readings for SUNDAY, April 5, 2020 — Sunday of the Passion: Palm Sunday

https://www.biblegateway.com/reading-plans/revised-common-lectionary-complementary/2020/04/05?version=NIV
Palm/Passion Sunday
Matthew 21:1-11; Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29; Isaiah 50:4-9a; Psalm 31:9-16; Philippians 2:5-11; Matthew 27:11-54

The Sunday Lectionary Readings
SUNDAY, April 5, 2020 — Sunday of the Passion: Palm Sunday
(Revised Common Lectionary Year A)

Palm/Passion Sunday
Isaiah 50:4-9a; Psalm 31:9-16; Philippians 2:5-11; Matthew 27:11-54

Opening

O Lord God, whose Son followed your will, both as Servant and Savior, and now rules in the hearts of those who accept him as King: Open our hearts to his rule, that we may rejoice in the blessings of his kingdom and share with those who honor him with their lives. In his name, we pray. Amen.

The Collect
(from the Book of Common Prayers)
Almighty and everliving God, in your tender love for the human race you sent your Son our Savior Jesus Christ to take upon him our nature, and to suffer death upon the cross, giving us the example of his great humility: Mercifully grant that we may walk in the way of his suffering, and also share in his resurrection; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Prayer of Confession

Patient God, we confess that we love a parade. We are very happy to see banners waving and hear people shouting their praises. Our hearts thrill to the spectacle. But we fail to see the sadness on the face of the Savior; our shouts block out his sorrow. He comes to us as King, and we expect that royal treatment will follow. We do not and cannot believe that in a few days we will be among those who will turn our backs and run from his presence. How fickle we are, O Lord. Yet you continually forgive us and call us to turn our lives around--to see the needs of others, to reach out in trust and faith, to be willing to witness to your good news of saving love. Heal our hearts and give us courage for the days ahead; for we ask this in Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Words of Assurance

Though you have fallen short, God reaches out to you in loving forgiveness. God is with you, celebrating this day and walking all the way to the cross with you. For the time of salvation is near.

Prayer of the Day
Sovereign God, you have established your rule in the human heart through the servanthood of Jesus Christ. By your Spirit, keep us in the joyful procession of those who with their tongues confess Jesus as Lord and with their lives praise him as Savior, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.


The Liturgy of the Palms


The Gospel
Jesus enters Jerusalem
21:1 As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, 2 saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. 3 If anyone says anything to you, say that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away.”

4 This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet:

5  “Say to Daughter Zion,
     ‘See, your king comes to you,
   gentle and riding on a donkey,
     and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’”

6 The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. 7 They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks on them for Jesus to sit on. 8 A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9 The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,

“Hosanna to the Son of David!”

“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”

“Hosanna in the highest heaven!”

10 When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, “Who is this?”

11 The crowds answered, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.”


The passover praise psalm
1  Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
     his love endures forever.

2  Let Israel say:
     “His love endures forever.”

19 Open for me the gates of the righteous;
     I will enter and give thanks to the Lord.
20 This is the gate of the Lord
     through which the righteous may enter.
21 I will give you thanks, for you answered me;
     you have become my salvation.

22 The stone the builders rejected
     has become the cornerstone;
23 the Lord has done this,
     and it is marvelous in our eyes.
24 The Lord has done it this very day;
     let us rejoice today and be glad.

25 Lord, save us!
     Lord, grant us success!

26 Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
     From the house of the Lord we bless you.
27 The Lord is God,
     and he has made his light shine on us.
   With boughs in hand, join in the festal procession
     up to the horns of the altar.

28 You are my God, and I will praise you;
     you are my God, and I will exalt you.

29 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
     his love endures forever.


The Liturgy of the Word


First Reading
The servant submits to suffering
4  The Sovereign Lord has given me a well-instructed tongue,
     to know the word that sustains the weary.
   He wakens me morning by morning,
     wakens my ear to listen like one being instructed.
5  The Sovereign Lord has opened my ears;
     I have not been rebellious,
     I have not turned away.
6  I offered my back to those who beat me,
     my cheeks to those who pulled out my beard;
   I did not hide my face
     from mocking and spitting.
7  Because the Sovereign Lord helps me,
     I will not be disgraced.
   Therefore have I set my face like flint,
     and I know I will not be put to shame.
8  He who vindicates me is near.
     Who then will bring charges against me?
     Let us face each other!
   Who is my accuser?
     Let him confront me!
9  It is the Sovereign Lord who helps me.
     Who will condemn me?


I commend my spirit
9  Be merciful to me, Lord, for I am in distress;
     my eyes grow weak with sorrow,
     my soul and body with grief.
10 My life is consumed by anguish
     and my years by groaning;
   my strength fails because of my affliction,
     and my bones grow weak.
11 Because of all my enemies,
     I am the utter contempt of my neighbors
   and an object of dread to my closest friends—
     those who see me on the street flee from me.
12 I am forgotten as though I were dead;
     I have become like broken pottery.
13 For I hear many whispering,
     “Terror on every side!”
   They conspire against me
     and plot to take my life.

14 But I trust in you, Lord;
     I say, “You are my God.”
15 My times are in your hands;
     deliver me from the hands of my enemies,
     from those who pursue me.
16 Let your face shine on your servant;
     save me in your unfailing love.


Second Reading
Death on a cross
2:5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:

6  Who, being in very nature God,
     did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
7  rather, he made himself nothing
     by taking the very nature of a servant,
     being made in human likeness.
8  And being found in appearance as a man,
     he humbled himself
     by becoming obedient to death—
         even death on a cross!

9  Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
     and gave him the name that is above every name,
10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
     in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
     to the glory of God the Father.


Gospel Acclamation
And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross! Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name.

How quickly the crowds of Palm Sunday disappear. The loud “Hosannas” echo in the stillness of the night. The cry of the crowd that gathers on Good Friday is not “Hosanna to the highest” but rather, “Crucify him! Crucify him!”


The Gospel
The passion and death of Jesus
27:11 Meanwhile Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?”

“You have said so,” Jesus replied.

12 When he was accused by the chief priests and the elders, he gave no answer. 13 Then Pilate asked him, “Don’t you hear the testimony they are bringing against you?” 14 But Jesus made no reply, not even to a single charge—to the great amazement of the governor.

15 Now it was the governor’s custom at the festival to release a prisoner chosen by the crowd. 16 At that time they had a well-known prisoner whose name was Jesus Barabbas. 17 So when the crowd had gathered, Pilate asked them, “Which one do you want me to release to you: Jesus Barabbas, or Jesus who is called the Messiah?” 18 For he knew it was out of self-interest that they had handed Jesus over to him.

19 While Pilate was sitting on the judge’s seat, his wife sent him this message: “Don’t have anything to do with that innocent man, for I have suffered a great deal today in a dream because of him.”

20 But the chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowd to ask for Barabbas and to have Jesus executed.

21 “Which of the two do you want me to release to you?” asked the governor.

“Barabbas,” they answered.

22 “What shall I do, then, with Jesus who is called the Messiah?” Pilate asked.

They all answered, “Crucify him!”

23 “Why? What crime has he committed?” asked Pilate.

But they shouted all the louder, “Crucify him!”

24 When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. “I am innocent of this man’s blood,” he said. “It is your responsibility!”

25 All the people answered, “His blood is on us and on our children!”

26 Then he released Barabbas to them. But he had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified.

27 Then the governor’s soldiers took Jesus into the Praetorium and gathered the whole company of soldiers around him. 28 They stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, 29 and then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand. Then they knelt in front of him and mocked him. “Hail, king of the Jews!” they said. 30 They spit on him, and took the staff and struck him on the head again and again. 31 After they had mocked him, they took off the robe and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him away to crucify him.

32 As they were going out, they met a man from Cyrene, named Simon, and they forced him to carry the cross. 33 They came to a place called Golgotha (which means “the place of the skull”). 34 There they offered Jesus wine to drink, mixed with gall; but after tasting it, he refused to drink it. 35 When they had crucified him, they divided up his clothes by casting lots. 36 And sitting down, they kept watch over him there. 37 Above his head they placed the written charge against him: this is jesus, the king of the jews.

38 Two rebels were crucified with him, one on his right and one on his left. 39 Those who passed by hurled insults at him, shaking their heads 40 and saying, “You who are going to destroy the temple and build it in three days, save yourself! Come down from the cross, if you are the Son of God!” 41 In the same way the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders mocked him. 42 “He saved others,” they said, “but he can’t save himself! He’s the king of Israel! Let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him. 43 He trusts in God. Let God rescue him now if he wants him, for he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’” 44 In the same way the rebels who were crucified with him also heaped insults on him.

45 From noon until three in the afternoon darkness came over all the land. 46 About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” (which means “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”).

47 When some of those standing there heard this, they said, “He’s calling Elijah.”

48 Immediately one of them ran and got a sponge. He filled it with wine vinegar, put it on a staff, and offered it to Jesus to drink. 49 The rest said, “Now leave him alone. Let’s see if Elijah comes to save him.”

50 And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit.

51 At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook, the rocks split 52 and the tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life. 53 They came out of the tombs after Jesus’ resurrection and went into the holy city and appeared to many people.

54 When the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified, and exclaimed, “Surely he was the Son of God!”


Here end the Readings


Click HERE to read today’s Holy Gospel Lesson message


  • I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth.
  • I believe in Jesus Christ, his only son, our Lord, who was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried; he descended to the dead. On the third day he rose again; he ascended to heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father, and he will come again to judge the living and the dead.
  • I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen

Benediction
Lord, just as we have entered Jerusalem with you, be with us in all the Jerusalems we will be facing. Guide our steps. Encourage our hearts. Give us abundant faith to follow you. Amen.


Hosanna, blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.

Optional parts of the readings are set off in [square brackets.]

The Bible texts of the Old Testament, Epistle, and Gospel lessons are from The Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
The Daily Lectionary for SUNDAY, April 5, 2020 — Sunday of the Passion: Palm Sunday
Matthew 21:1-11; Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29; Isaiah 50:4-9a; Psalm 31:9-16; Philippians 2:5-11; Matthew 27:11-54

“Palm Sunday: Who Is This?” The Sermon for SUNDAY, April 5, 2020 — Palm Sunday


Our Gospel message comes to us today from the 21st chapter of Matthew, beginning with the 1st verse, “Jesus enters Jerusalem.”



21:1 As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, 2 saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. 3 If anyone says anything to you, say that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away.”

4 This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet:

5  “Say to Daughter Zion,
     ‘See, your king comes to you,
   gentle and riding on a donkey,
     and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’”

6 The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. 7 They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks on them for Jesus to sit on. 8 A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9 The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,

“Hosanna to the Son of David!”

“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”

“Hosanna in the highest heaven!”

10 When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, “Who is this?”

11 The crowds answered, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.” (Matthew 21:1-11)

Are you ever amazed, O Lord, at our responses to the Savior? We get all excited about the parade into Jerusalem. We gather palm fronds and distribute them among those present so that they can wave them in triumph, replicating the parade and the crowd. Children sing the praises of Jesus. Adults remove their cloaks and place them on the road in front of the donkey so that he may not make a misstep. We could stay at this scene forever and enjoy the moment. But we are being called forward, through the gates of the Holy City to the Temple and from the Temple to the Cross. Be with us and give us courage to face what lies ahead. Strengthen our faith that we will remain steadfast at the time of reckoning; for we ask this in Jesus’ Name. Amen.

“Palm Sunday: Who Is This?”

If you had been standing there in that first Palm Sunday crowd as Jesus entered Jerusalem riding on a donkey, what would you have heard? Keeping your eyes open, imagine it. What would you have heard? If you were listening in the original languages spoken by the people of Jesus’ day, you would have heard something that sounded like “Jesus!” “Jesus!” “Jesus!” over and over again. It was not necessarily that the people were calling out the name that Jesus had been given by his parents. Instead, they were describing what they wanted Jesus to do for them. You see, the word “Jesus” sounds very similar to the word “Hosanna” in the original language of the Bible. Not only do the two words “Jesus” and “Hosanna” sound alike, they share the same root and have nearly identical meanings. They both mean, “save, deliver, rescue.” You might think back to the Christmas account and the angel who appeared to Joseph in a dream. The angel told Joseph what he was to name the child Mary was going to give birth to and the reason why. The angel said, “You are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21). Therefore, people’s shouts of “Hosanna” were certainly directed to the right person. Jesus’ sole purpose for coming into this world was to save, to rescue, to deliver people. But FROM WHAT were the people looking for Jesus to save them? They weren’t so much concerned about their sin. They were looking for Jesus to save them from the problems and hardships that they were experiencing.

The Jews were at best second-rate citizens in the Roman Empire. The power and prestige of the nation of Israel had long-since faded. They had no king, no real power or influence, no real place to call their own. At present, the Jews got along with the Roman only because they didn’t really have much of a choice but to get along. It had been a long, bloody history where Israel always seemed to come out on the losing end. The Jews looked forward to the day when things would be reversed, and Israel would once again resume what they believed to be its rightful position of power and prestige within the world, a time when life would be good.

Finally, they thought they had found the person to make all these dreams come true. They looked to Jesus and called out, “Jesus. Hosanna! Save us now!” They believed that Jesus could give them exactly what they were looking for, someone who would make their lives easier and more comfortable. After all, Jesus certainly seemed to possess the power they were looking for. Jesus’ reputation had grown throughout Israel during the last three years. He had demonstrated his power and his care in the miracles he performed, healing the sick and suffering, providing free food for thousands. And just recently, he had even raised a dead man named Lazarus back to life. Yes, they called to Jesus to “Hosanna! Save us! Save us from our problems! Rescue us from the ruthless Romans! Restore our nation! Make our lives better! Jesus, save us now!”

Sound familiar? In many people’s minds, that’s what religion is. Religion is about making God into the type of god that THEY want him to be. Developing a god that gives you what you want, that fits within the life that you want to live. It is a god that will fix your problems, and make you healthy, wealthy, successful, and popular. A god who save you from life’s problems. In reality, it’s not so much about who GOD actually is, but what YOU want god to be and to do for you.

Do we ever find ourselves slipping into that mindset when it comes to Jesus? Do we reduce Jesus to a savior whose primary purpose is to save us from the problems that we are right now experiencing in this life?  Do we make Jesus into someone who is merely supposed to make our lives easier? “Jesus, save me from this difficult marriage. Jesus, save me from this mountain of debt. Jesus, save me from this sadness and loneliness. Jesus save me from this pain and suffering. Jesus save us from this dreaded coronavirus disease.” Can Jesus take those problems away? Absolutely he can. Can he and does he help us through those problems? Absolutely. But if that’s the ONLY type of Savior Jesus is, someone who fixes our problems in this life, then Jesus is the biggest fraud and phony that has ever lived. If Jesus ONLY came to save us from the problems that we are right now experiencing, then what has Jesus really accomplished? We get 70, 80, 90, 100 years of a comfortable life and then what happens? After a very comfortable life, we would be lost eternally, separated from God and his blessings because Jesus had addressed the cause of all those problems.

It would be like going to the doctor because you have chronic pain. The doctor says that you have two choices. 1) You can have surgery that will permanently relieve the pain although the recovery will take a while, OR 2) He can treat the symptoms which will bring some temporary relief, but the pain will continue to return. Wouldn’t it be so much better to treat the cause even with the time for recovery, rather than live with the endless cycle of pain?

Jesus came not merely to treat the symptoms, but to address the cause. The very real problems that we face in this life are symptoms of a much larger problem—a problem called sin. We see the symptoms of sin all around us and inside of us. We see them in relationships, selfishness that is more concerned about how something will affect me than someone else, a hatred that causes people to harm others with their words and actions. We see the symptoms of sin in our bodies and minds—sickness, disease, confusion, loss of abilities. We see the symptoms of sin in nature, as natural disasters suddenly strike causing death and destruction. We see the symptom of sin as we stand beside the grave of a loved one and the sadness sweeps over us with the separation we now face.

I suppose that Jesus could have just addressed the symptoms of our sin, giving you a life that would be temporarily enjoyable, but Jesus knew better, he wanted better for us. Jesus did not come into this world to be some sort of aspirin or cortisone shot that brings some temporary relief. Jesus came to be the cure for sin. Jesus came to “save his people from their sin.” And what did that rescue require? It required Palm Sunday.

At the beginning of this sermon, I asked you what you would have HEARD if you were standing among the crowd on that first Palm Sunday. Now I want you to imagine what you would have SEEN. Just imagine. You would have seen a man riding on a donkey—a man that looked like any other 33-year-old Jewish man of his day. There was nothing special or unusual about his appearance. But now I want you to see what is not visible. I want you to look past his mere appearance and look at Jesus through the words of Philippians 2 which you read in today’s Sunday Lectionary Readings. This man Jesus is none other than the King of glory, the Lord God Almighty who created and rules over all things. You cannot see his glory because he has chosen to put it aside for a time. He has chosen to live like us, with the same limitations and restrictions that we do. He has chosen to struggle daily against temptation. He has come to take our place. He has come to take our place not only in life, but also in death.

In just five days from Palm Sunday, Jesus would leave Jerusalem, not riding a donkey but carrying a cross. The praise of, “Save us!” would be replaced with the mockery, “Save yourself!” Jesus would go to suffer and die in our place, and in the place of all people. While on the cross, Jesus would suffer the eternal separation from God that sin deserves so that when our life here on earth comes to an end, we will never need to experience that separation from God.

In one week from Palm Sunday, Jesus would rise from the dead and again make full use of the divine power and glory that was his as the King of glory. With his resurrection, Jesus would proclaim that he has the power to rescue people permanently from this sinful world. Jesus would transform death so that for all those who believe in him death is now a glorious reunion with fellow Christians, the beginning of a life away from every symptom of this sinful world. You see, Jesus is not just some spiritual cortisone shot to bring some temporary relief from the symptoms of life in this sinful world. Jesus is the cure for sin, he is as his name says: our Rescuer, Deliverer, Savior. He is our Jesus!

That is the cure that Jesus delivers every time a person is baptized. As the Holy Spirit creates faith in Jesus and gives to that person what he has promised—forgiveness of sins and the promise of life eternal in heaven. That is the cure that Jesus delivers every time a person hears about Jesus and by the Holy Spirit’s power, trusts that Jesus is their deliverer who will bring them to eternal life. That is the cure that Jesus delivers to us as we receive the Lord’s Supper and hear Jesus announce, “Your sins are forgiven. I will see you in heaven one day.” That is the cure that strengthens us to face the symptoms of life in this sinful world, knowing that one day they will all be over, that Jesus will deliver, save, rescue us from this world to be with him in heaven’s glory.

What do you hear, what do you see as Jesus enters Jerusalem on Palm Sunday? We hear the cries of, “Hosanna!” to the King of Glory who makes his way to the cross to save us, not merely for now, but to save us from our sins, to save us for eternity.

Let us pray: Praise be to you, O God, who boldly asks us to march into the Jerusalems that confront us each day. We would like to think that we will be loved and cherished wherever we go; our witness of faith will be gladly received. But it will not necessarily be so. For there are those who fear faith; who question the reality of your love and healing power. With each step we take, guide our lives in your paths of peace and hope. Give us courage and strength to witness to your love. Help us feel the powerful presence of Jesus Christ in our lives, calling us to come with him to truth and salvation. Amen.



Seeking God?
Click HERE to find out more about how to have a personal
relationship with Jesus Christ

Scripture is taken from The Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. Sermon contributed by Rev. Jonathan Kruschel.
What kind of Jesus are you looking for? The Palm Sunday crowd seemed to be looking for a Jesus to save them from the now, but Jesus is so much more! Jesus is a Savior for eternity!  See Jesus for who he truly is!

The Daily Prayer for SUNDAY, April 5, 2020, 2020

https://biblegateway.christianbook.com/common-prayer-liturgy-for-ordinary-radicals/shane-claiborne/9780310326199/pd/326199
The Daily Prayer
SUNDAY, April 5, 2020

Oscar Romero, a martyr of the church’s struggle in El Salvador, wrote, “I do not tire of telling everyone, especially young people who long for their people’s liberation, that I admire their social and political sensitivity, but it saddens me when they waste it by going on ways that are false. Let us, too, all take notice that the great leader of our liberation is the Lord’s Anointed One, who comes to announce good news to the poor, to give freedom to the captives, to give news of the missing, to give joy to so many homes in mourning, so that society may be renewed as in the sabbatical years of Israel.”

Jesus, you are the King of Glory and the King of Creation. Teach us to recognize the ways of your kingdom that we might participate as faithful and devout residents in the space between a broken world and the coming kingdom of God. Amen.

Verse of the Day SUNDAY, April 5, 2020

https://www.biblegateway.com/reading-plans/verse-of-the-day/2020/04/05?version=NIV

2 Corinthians 5:14-15
For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.
Read all of 2 Corinthians 5

Listen to 2 Corinthians 5

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Un dia a la Vez - Domingo 05 de abril de 2020

https://www.biblegateway.com/devotionals/un-dia-vez/2020/04/05

Tiempos difíciles y de oportunidades

A las montañas levanto mis ojos; ¿de dónde ha de venir mi ayuda? Mi ayuda proviene del Señor, creador del cielo y de la tierra.

Hace unos meses nuestro jefe P. Mauricio Quintana, inspirado en una enseñanza de su pastor, nos hacía reflexionar en que atravesábamos un tiempo muy difícil, desde el punto vista económico. A decir verdad, muchas personas perdieron sus casas y muchos medios de comunicación hablaban de la crisis. Entonces nos enseñaba que hay dos maneras de ver el problema.

La primera es cuando te montas en la crisis y declaras que son tiempos muy difíciles, que tu vida va de mal en peor y que vas rumbo al abismo.

La segunda es cuando te paras en medio de la misma situación con otra mentalidad. En esta, sabes y aplicas lo que Dios dice en su Palabra cuando promete estar con nosotros y poner a prueba nuestra fe, si es cierto que todo lo que hablamos y decimos a otros lo aplicamos a nuestra propia vida, ahora que las cosas no están tan bien.

El año pasado, mientras algunos hablaban de perder sus casas, otros hablaban de su gran oportunidad para hacer los negocios que soñaron. Esto lo aplicamos para cualquier situación y de allí deberíamos aprender varias cosas: En tiempos difíciles podemos apreciar la misericordia de Dios, crecemos en lo espiritual y aprendemos a depender únicamente de Él.

Recuerda que Dios no da más carga de la que no podamos soportar.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón
Hace unos meses nuestro jefe P. Mauricio Quintana, inspirado en una enseñanza de su pastor, nos hacía reflexionar en que atravesábamos un tiempo muy difícil.

Standing Strong Through the Storm - Sunday, April 5, 2020

https://www.biblegateway.com/devotionals/standing-strong-through-the-storm/2020/04/05
TAKE THIS CUP

“Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.”

On hearing the news of the violent assassination of a Christian government minister, Shahbaz Bhatti, Maaria from Pakistan wrote these words in her “Secret Believers” blog:
Another man laid to rest, not like men who die for a better tomorrow or men who die for the restoration of a nation, or men who die for a noble cause. I am writing of a line of men and women who have entered Christ’s rest because they chose to believe in Him above the laws of the land and the laws of Islam. They chose to stand up for Christ…
Mr. Bhatti’s name has been added to that list. Every time I try to sleep, images of his car, the blood, the bullet holes, the sound of what it must have been like, the stench of what must have filled the air come to me along with the voice of a woman hidden away in a prison. A woman whose persecution started this spate of hatred and anger—Aasia Bibi, my sister—in solitary confinement, afraid, alone and waiting for the day she is hung for a crime she did not commit.

For every bullet that was sprayed, whether it hit him and spilled his blood or not, I offer the Al Quaida, forgiveness. I cannot speak yet for my aching people. I will give them time to get there. But I know there are Maarias who forgive the Al Quaida for taking away a man who loved Jesus and loved the Church and loved Pakistan. For every bullet, I remember the nails on the cross and ask the Lord to “Forgive them for they know not what they do.” They have been brainwashed. They are not born for this. God allows them into the world for great things. I ask that you forgive them too.

For every drop of blood spilled, forgive them. Jesus hung on the cross and his blood was spilled for us. For every drop of blood, I urge you my Christian family around the world, to remember the sips of wine from the cup that Jesus passed among his disciples in the upper room…Then remember those of us for whom the words of Christ are so real today, “Lord...take this cup from me.” I am sure there were nights when Mr. Bhatti spoke into the darkness to God and asked Him to deliver him from this. But God gave him the courage to carry on. He did not bend to the demand to give up and walk away.

RESPONSE: Today I will pray for courage to honor Jesus and forgive those who snuff out His light.

PRAYER: Lord, grant Your courage, peace and forgiving spirit to all who grieve injustices today.

Standing Strong Through The Storm (SSTS), a daily devotional message by SSTS author Paul Estabrooks. © 2011 Open Doors International. Used by permission.

LHM Daily Devotions - April 5, 2020 - A TIME FOR JOY

https://www.lhm.org/dailydevotions/default.asp?date=20200405

"A TIME FOR JOY"

April 5, 2020

And throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. And as He rode along, they spread their cloaks on the road. As He was drawing near—already on the way down the Mount of Olives—the whole multitude of His disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen, saying, "Blessed is the King who comes in the Name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!" And some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Him, "Teacher, rebuke Your disciples." He answered, "I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out."
Luke 19:35-40, ESV

Sometimes Palm Sunday reminds me of a roller-coaster. You know how there's always one point where you find yourself sitting at the very top of a tall, tall hill, as the car moves slowly, slowly toward a huge, deep drop? That's Palm Sunday. You know that any moment now you'll be heading for the ground at a terrifying speed—but right now, at the top of the world, the view is amazing.

It must have been like that for Jesus. He knew perfectly well what was coming up—the cleaning of the temple, the Last Supper, the betrayal, Gethsemane, arrest, trial, torture, and death. But for just a short time, He was looking at a tiny preview of the way it will be at the end of the world—when humanity is set free and celebrating: "A great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, 'Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!'" (Revelation 7:9b-10)

That was what He came for—to turn wretched, shivering slaves of sin into the free, joyful people of God. And Palm Sunday was a foretaste of the joy that would be His—and all of ours—on that final day when Jesus returns to bring us into God's kingdom. No wonder He said, "If these (people) were silent, the very stones would cry out!" Palm Sunday is a time for joy, because our Savior has come and is setting us free.

THE PRAYER: Dear Father, thank You for giving us a foretaste of this joy. Amen.

Reflection Questions:
  1. Name one of the happiest celebrations you can remember. What made it happy?
  2. Have you ever been there when an unplanned celebration broke out? What happened?
  3. What do you most look forward to about Jesus' return?

Lenten Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo. Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
Name one of the happiest celebrations you can remember. What made it happy?

Devocional CPTLN del 05 de abril de 2020 - Un tiempo para alegrarse


ALIMENTO DIARIO

Un tiempo para alegrarse

05 de Abril de 2020

Conforme Jesús avanzaba, la multitud tendía sus mantos por el camino. Cuando se acercó a la bajada del monte de los Olivos, todo el conjunto de sus discípulos comenzó a gritar de alegría y a alabar a Dios por todas las maravillas que habían visto; y decían: "¡Bendito el rey que viene en el nombre del Señor! ¡Paz en el cielo, y gloria en las alturas!" Algunos de los fariseos que iban entre la multitud le dijeron: "Maestro, ¡reprende a tus discípulos!" Pero Jesús les dijo: "Si éstos callaran, las piedras clamarían."

A veces, el Domingo de Ramos me recuerda a una montaña rusa. Así me lo imagino: Jesús está en la cima, contemplando una vista increíble, pero de repente todo cambia y, como si estuviera en una montaña rusa, baja bruscamente a una situación de dolor y sufrimiento.

Jesús sabía perfectamente lo que se avecinaba: la purificación del templo, la Última Cena, la traición, Getsemaní, arresto, juicio, tortura y muerte. Pero por un corto tiempo estuvo viendo un pequeño adelanto de cómo será el fin del mundo, cuando la humanidad sea liberada y celebre: "Después de esto vi aparecer una gran multitud compuesta de todas las naciones, tribus, pueblos y lenguas. Era imposible saber su número. Estaban de pie ante el trono, en presencia del Cordero, y vestían ropas blancas; en sus manos llevaban ramas de palma, y a grandes voces gritaban: 'La salvación proviene de nuestro Dios, que está sentado en el trono, y del Cordero'" (Apocalipsis 7:9-10).

A eso vino: a convertir a esclavos del pecado, miserables y temblorosos, en el pueblo libre y alegre de Dios. Y el Domingo de Ramos fue un anticipo de esa alegría en el último día cuando Jesús regrese para llevarnos al reino de Dios. No es de extrañar que él dijera: "Si éstos callaran, las piedras clamarían." El Domingo de Ramos es un momento de alegría porque nuestro Salvador ha venido y nos está liberando.

ORACIÓN: Querido Padre, gracias por darnos un anticipo de esta alegría. Amén.

Dra. Kari Vo

Para reflexionar:
  1. Nombra una de las celebraciones más felices que puedas recordar.
  2. ¿Qué es lo que más esperas del regreso de Jesús?

© Copyright 2020 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. Que a través de estos devocionales, la Palabra de Dios te refresque en tu diario caminar.
Nombra una de las celebraciones más felices que puedas recordar.

Unser Täglich Brot - Der Eine, der rettet

https://unsertaeglichbrot.org/2020/04/05/der-eine-der-rettet/

Der Eine, der rettet

Lesung: Johannes 12,12-18 | Die Bibel in einem Jahr: 1. Samuel 1-3; Lukas 8,26-56

Sie hielten Palmzweige in den Händen und zogen die Straße hinunter, ihm entgegen. Dabei riefen sie: „Gelobt sei Gott! Gepriesen sei, der im Namen des Herrn kommt! Heil dem König Israels!“

Er wurde „einer der mutigsten Lebenden“ genannt, aber er war nicht das, was andere erwartet hatten. Desmond Doss war ein Soldat, der sich weigerte, eine Waffe zu tragen. Als Sanitäter rettete er im Alleingang 75 verletzte Soldaten in einer Schlacht, darunter einige, die ihn einst als Feigling bezeichneten und ihn wegen seines Glaubens verspotteten. Desmond stieß auf heftiges Gewehrfeuer und betete ununterbrochen: „Herr, bitte hilf mir noch einen weiteren zu holen.“

Die Bibel sagt uns, dass Jesus stark missverstanden wurde. An einem Tag, den der Prophet Sacharja (9,9) vorausgesagt hatte, kam Jesus auf einem Esel nach Jerusalem, und die Menge winkte mit Zweigen und rief „Hosianna!“ (ein Ausruf des Lobes, der „Rette!“ bedeutet). Sie zitierten Psalm 118,26 und riefen: „Gepriesen sei, der im Namen des Herrn kommt!“ (Johannes 12,13). Aber der nächste Vers in diesem Psalm bezieht sich darauf, dass ein Opfer „mit Zweigen in der Hand“ gebracht wird (Psalm 118,27). Während die Menge in Johannes 12 einen irdischen König erwartete, um sie vor Rom zu retten, war Jesus viel mehr. Er war König der Könige und unser Opfer – Gott im Fleisch, der bereitwillig das Kreuz annahm, um uns von unseren Sünden zu retten – eine Aufgabe, die Jahrhunderte zuvor prophezeit wurde.

„Zuerst verstanden seine Jünger das alles nicht“, schreibt Johannes. Erst später „wurde ihnen klar, dass diese Dinge über ihn geschrieben worden waren“ (Johannes 12,16). Durch sein Wort wurden Gottes ewige Absichten klar. Er liebt uns genug, um einen mächtigen Retter zu senden!
Wie hat Jesus dich gerettet? Wie kannst du ihm heute dankbar dein Lob aussprechen?

Auferstandener Retter, ich preise dich für dein Opfer am Kreuz. Hilf mir, zu leben, um dir zu dienen und dich zu preisen, mein ewiger König!


© 2020 Unser Täglich Brot
Er wurde „einer der mutigsten Lebenden“ genannt, aber er war nicht das, was andere erwartet hatten.