Palm Sunday [It was about two thousand years ago, in the city of Jerusalem--at that time under Roman occupation—that the man known as Jesus of Nazareth was secretly arrested and brought to trial. In a mockery of justice he was quickly condemned, tortured and executed. The charge? Blasphemy.
More than his deeds, it was his identity that was at issue. “Are you the Son of God then?” asked his accusers. “Yes, I am,” he replied. This, they could not tolerate and they sought to kill him as quickly as possible.
Though this case happened long ago, the reverberations from it continue to haunt and shake the very foundations of the world. Some would shut the book and declare, “Case closed!” Yet so many questions still beg for an answer.
Popular opinion about Jesus varied: some said he was a good teacher, a prophet, a messenger of God. Some said he was out of his mind.
“But who do YOU say I am?” Jesus asked his disciples. One among them, Peter, a fisherman, declared: “The Messiah, the Son of the Living God!” But did Peter really understand what he was saying? If this Jesus was indeed the Messiah--the Savior so long awaited, spoken of by the prophets of old--why didn’t more people recognize him? If he really was the Son of the Living God, why did the religious establishment seek so adamantly to destroy him? … and why did his friends desert him? … how could the Son of God die?]
Among Jesus’ followers were fishermen, men who knew the terrifying power of a storm at sea. Yet, in Jesus they encountered a power far greater than even the storm. He spoke and the storm obeyed. The wind hushed, and the sea became still. Such power struck his followers with awe and bewilderment. (Mark 4:35-41)
Who is This Man https://dalelund.bandcamp.com/track/who-is-this-man
There was one man who knew the power of Jesus’ voice over a far greater threat than even a violent storm--the irrevocable finality of death. That man was Lazarus, who, at Jesus’ command, emerged from the tomb in which his sister Martha had buried him four days earlier. (John 11)
Lazarus and Martha https://dalelund.bandcamp.com/track/lazarus-and-martha
Even after so great a miracle as the resurrection of Lazarus, there was still confusion over the identity of Jesus. Even though confronted with such irrefutable evidence as Lazarus himself, there were still those who refused to put their faith in Jesus.
In fact, the very miracle that brought life to Lazarus would lead ultimately to the death of Jesus. The attention that such a miracle was gaining among the masses was too much of a political threat for the religious hierarchy. Led by Caiaphas, the chief priest, they put into motion the plot to kill Jesus. All they lacked was a willing accomplice… (John 11:45-53)