Monday, the new Sunday
Have you ever thought of the impact that a poor carpentar from Nazareth had on history? Before Jesus, Sunday was like Monday that came too early. It had no real significance other than being the first day of the week. Everyone was back to work and business as usual. The first day after Shabat Hagadol (the sabbath before the passover) would be the last regular Sunday. On this day Jesus, a revolutionary young rabbi came riding into Jerusalem. He had quite a following at this point. All four of the gospel accounts record for us that as He came riding into the city a crowd began laying down their cloaks and palm branches for him to ride on. They were crying out “Hosanna!”....”Hosanna to the Son of David!”. This was the last day time that Sunday would be just the first day of the week. Jesus would spend the next few days teaching, healing and preparing for the Passover. He spent time in Bethany with his closest friends and began telling them what was to come. On Thursday, He would celebrate the Passover with them. Jesus knew that something was brewing and he took advantage of his last hours with the disciples before his death. The gospels record some intimate moments he spent teaching and praying with them. Then, late Thursday night, he was betrayed and delivered to the Jewish leaders of the day. On Friday, he was taken to Pilate and the demand was made for Him to be crucified. Saturday was filled with brokeness and pain and confusion. Some of the women got up early on Sunday morning to perform the painful task of anointing their friend’s dead body. This is where Sunday got a new identity. They got to Jesus’ tomb only to be greeted by two angels that told them He was not there because He was alive! Jesus had risen from the grave just as He’d said He would. From then on the church would gather on Sunday to remember and celebrate the glorious resurrection of Jesus the Messiah. Sunday was filled with meaning. Every Sunday since then, all around the world there have been various communities of Christians that gather to worship and celebrate on the day that their Savior rose. Every Sunday.
Let’s lean into this week and think deeply on its significance. I believe that you don’t really appreciate Sunday until you understand Friday and the events that lead up to the death of Jesus. Sunday hasn’t been the same since the resurrection of Jesus almost 2000 years ago. No other event has made such an impact on human history.