Mar. 24: Palm/Passion Sunday                           Read Luke 19:28-40

After he had said this, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. When he had come near Bethphage and Bethany, at the place called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of the disciples, saying, “Go into the village ahead of you, and as you enter it you will find tied there a colt that has never been ridden. Untie it and bring it here. If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ just say this, ‘The Lord needs it.'”

So those who were sent departed and found it as he had told them. As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, “Why are you untying the colt?” They said, “The Lord needs it.” Then they brought it to Jesus; and after throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. As he rode along, people kept spreading their cloaks on the road.

As he was now approaching the path down from the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to praise God joyfully with a loud voice for all the deeds of power 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 heaven!”

Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, order your disciples to stop.”

He answered, “I tell you, if these were silent, the stones would shout out.”


from Larry Grimes, Director of Church Relations, Bethany College

“The Lord needs it” . . . and there it is . . .

Mind you it’s never been ridden

but they brought it because the Lord needed it.

They tossed cloaks on the young unbroken thing,

set Jesus a top it and they were off . . .


Then there was a great rumble of praise . . . loud enough

to shout out the deeds of power they had seen—

fishes and loaves, water into wine, the lame healed,

demons rushing into pigs, the deaf with sound, a dead man raised—


Like angels over Bethlehem they boom their praise:

“Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven!”

Like the wise men from the east they worship him:

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


Yet something is amiss. These are not angels who raise their voices.  They are people made of skin and bones, prone to blow with the wind.


A Pharisee speaks: “Teacher, order your disciples to stop.”

Olive branches drop. A sudden hush.  A riddling response:

“I tell you, if these were silent, the stones would shout out.”


Put an ear close to the stones. Stay down.

The stones are shouting a song.

Stay down and you can hear it clearly,

thrumming around a stone at the silent center.


Hear it? A shout roars out shaking the walls of Jerusalem:

“The stone that the builders have rejected”—

dumped as a paving stone on this fateful road—

is the keystone of the Kingdom come, the Kingdom coming

—a harbinger of all stones rolled away.


Kyrie eleison.  Lord, have mercy.


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