Daily Gospel Reflection – Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion

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Daily Gospel Reflection – Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion

Bishop Robert Barron 
April 2, 2023 
Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion 

Friends, on Palm Sunday, the culminating point of Lent, the Church reads from one of the great Passion narratives from the synoptic Gospels. But I want to look at the second reading today—a passage from the second chapter of Paul’s Letter to the Philippians, the heart of which is a hymn or poem. These words go back to the very beginning of Christianity, and they serve as a beautiful summary statement of the faith. Paul is reflecting on the downward trajectory of the Son of God—all the way down into death itself, even death on a cross. 

Gospel: Jn 11:45-56

Many of the Jews who had come to Mary and seen what Jesus had done began to believe in him. But some of them went to the Pharisees and told them what Jesus had done. So the chief priests and the Pharisees convened the Sanhedrin and said, "What are we going to do? This man is performing many signs. If we leave him alone, all will believe in him, and the Romans will come and take away both our land and our nation." But one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, "You know nothing, nor do you consider that it is better for you that one man should die instead of the people, so that the whole nation may not perish." He did not say this on his own, but since he was high priest for that year, he prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the nation, and not only for the nation, but also to gather into one the dispersed children of God. So from that day on they planned to kill him. 

So Jesus no longer walked about in public among the Jews, but he left for the region near the desert, to a town called Ephraim, and there he remained with his disciples. 

Now the Passover of the Jews was near, and many went up from the country to Jerusalem before Passover to purify themselves. They looked for Jesus and said to one another as they were in the temple area, "What do you think? That he will not come to the feast?" 
*United States Conference of Catholic 

Bishop Robert Barron

Friends, on this Palm Sunday, Matthew’s magnificent Gospel of the Passion bids us to reflect on the seriousness of sin. 

To be sure, the Gospel proclaimed by the first Christians involves the glorious Resurrection, but those initial evangelists never let their hearers forget that the one who had been raised was none other than the one who had been crucified. 

So the question was—and remains—why would God’s salvation of the human race have to include something as horrifying as the Crucifixion of the Son of God? 

Here’s the point. The Scriptural authors understand sin not so much as a series of acts as a condition in which we are stuck. No amount of merely human effort could possibly solve the problem. Something awful had to be done on our behalf in order to offset the awfulness of sin.

With this biblical realism in mind, we can begin to comprehend why the Crucifixion of the Son of God was necessary. The just rapport between God and human beings could not be re-established either through our moral effort or with simply a word of forgiveness. Something had to be done—and God alone could do it.

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HỘI DÒNG NỮ ĐA MINH GÒ VẤP: Daily Gospel Reflection – Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion
Daily Gospel Reflection – Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion
Daily Gospel Reflection – Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion
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