Sunday, April 10, 2022

Gospel Reflection Luke 19:28-40

Today is Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord. There are several Gospel readings. I will focus on the first, which records Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem. 

Entire books could be written about all the symbolism in this passage. The Lord riding a cold. The Mount of Olives. The very entry into Jerusalem. Something in particular that captivates me is the proclamation of the multitude as the Lord enters, riding on a colt. "Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord. Peace in heaven and glory in the highest." Indeed, Jesus came in the name and in the very person of Yahweh, the Lord of Israel and all of creation. 

The Pharisees make a paltry attempt to shut this down, as the mechanism of their treachery was working behind the scenes. Jesus replies "I tell you, if they keep silent, the stones will cry out!" 

In the presence of God, right praise will come forth. Nothing can contain it. We read this over and over in the doxologies of the New Testament. St. Paul repeatedly bursts forth into praise in the midst of his writings (Phil. 4:20; Gal. 1:4-5; 1 Tim. 1:17; et. al.). Likewise, when we truly encounter the Lord Jesus, the Eternal Son and God of the universe, we cannot help but praise Him. Words will always fail to capture to totality His glory and majesty. 

We were made to live in harmony and peace with God. We were made to praise Him. God is goodness itself. We can desire nothing higher or better. As Augustine famously says, our hearts are restless until they find rest in Him. When we rest in God, our nature as rational creatures compels us to communicate this to the extent we are able. 

When we praise God, we speak of what we know. We speak from the depths of our being that has been transformed by divine love. 

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