5 April 2009 St. Athanasius Lutheran Church
Palm Sunday / Sunday of the Passion Vienna, VA
“All For You”
Text: Mark 14:1 - 15:47 (Philippians 2:5-11)
Grace, mercy, and peace to you from God our Father, and from our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.
A Lamb goes uncomplaining forth (LSB #438). Why? For you.
For you, Jesus is anointed for His burial.
For you, Jesus is sold into betrayal, and allows Himself to be betrayed.
For you, Jesus celebrates the Passover with His disciples, and gives His body to eat and His blood to drink.
For you, Jesus suffers and prays.
For you, Jesus drinks the awful cup of God’s wrath and condemnation against sin.
For you, Jesus does His Father’s will.
For you, Jesus is arrested, and will not fight back.
For you, Jesus endures a mock trial, standing before those who have already decided His fate, but are just trying to make it look plausible.
For you, Jesus does not defend Himself, but takes the slurs of men against Him.
For you, Jesus is spit on, punched, and mocked.
For you, Jesus is bound and led to the Roman governor.
For you, Jesus is traded for a murderer.
For you, Jesus is a pawn in a game for power.
For you, Jesus is scourged - whipped until His flesh is open and raw.
For you, Jesus is clothed is purple and wears a crown of thorns.
For you, Jesus carries the cross on which He will die.
For you, Jesus takes nothing to deaden the pain.
For you, the nails are punched through His hands and feet, crushing bone and sending waves of pain through tortured limbs.
For you, Jesus is humiliated and reviled.
For you, Jesus is forsaken - by men who mock Him, but disciples who fear for their own lives, by His Father because He bears the sin of the world.
For you, Jesus will not save Himself.
For you, Jesus endures the darkness of sin.
For you, Jesus bows His head and dies.
For you, Jesus’ body is laid in a tomb.
For you, because you are a sinner.
For you, because you have made God’s beautiful world a sewer of sin.
For you, because you have used your hands to hurt instead of help.
For you, because you love your things more than your God.
For you, because your mouths tear down instead of build up.
For you, because your minds devise and scheme evil instead of good.
For you, because upon you is inflicted the sins of others.
For you, because you are hurt and in pain.
For you, because you are mocked and reviled.
For you, because your hearts are broken, your love thrown back in your face, your good deeds trampled and gone unnoticed and unappreciated.
For you, because you weep painful tears.
For you, because you mourn the death of loved ones, even as death draws ever closer to you.
For you, because you are afraid.
For you, because the devil desires to have you; to sift you, corrupt you, and bring you with him to his never-ending death.
But he cannot have you.
Hell cannot have you.
Sin cannot have you.
Death and the grave cannot have you.
Because for you, a Lamb goes uncomplaining forth.
He came forth from Heaven in His incarnation, to be born for you.
He came forth to the waters of the Jordan to be baptized for you.
He came forth into the wilderness to be tempted for you.
He came forth eating and drinking with sinners like you, not ashamed.
He came forth healing, forgiving, and raising the dead, for you.
He came forth to ascend the cross for you; to die for you; to be buried for you; and to rise for you.
That the curtain of the Temple be torn in two from top to bottom.
The curtain that separated sinful man from a holy God.
The curtain of sin, that could be penetrated only with blood.
The blood of a lamb.
The Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world.
And still today, the Lamb comes uncomplaining forth.
Here, at this time, in this place, tearing the curtain of sin which veils our hearts with His forgiveness and life.
Coming with His Baptism, that you may be washed and reborn and healed.
Coming with His Absolution, that you may be forgiven and raised and holy.
Coming with His Supper, that you may be fed and strengthened and glorified.
Coming for you, that you may live.
For you, that hell be vanquished.
For you, that the grave be opened.
For you, that the devil be undone.
For you, that your sin be removed from you as far as the East is from the West.
For you, that your minds and hearts be made new, and you live a new life.
Sinner: no more; now: child of God.
All this Jesus does, for you.
And so you are never alone, never without love, never beyond hope.
You will never be forsaken, never condemned, never cast out.
For you live in Jesus and He in you.
What is His is yours, nothing withheld.
Now by promise and faith. But one day by sight, when all things are fulfilled.
When the Lamb goes forth once again, one final time, to gather all who are His own, and establish His kingdom forever.
And we will stand in joy beside Him. (LSB #438 v.4)
Until then, “have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus.”
He lives for you, that you may live for others.
Let us now enter into this Holy Week, and consider these things.
Let us now come to this altar, and receive the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.
Let us now rejoice and confess: Hosanna! Lord, save us.
For He has.
In the Name of the Father, and of the (+) Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Now the peace of God which passes all understanding, keep your hearts and minds through faith in Christ Jesus, our Lord. Amen.