It is the week of Passion Sunday.
I am still surprised at what I found on a list of Search engine results. People who should know better confuse Passion Sunday with Palm Sunday! It’s running about 99% of people are combining those two Sundays together. How can you understand the Double-Layered meaning of Palm Sunday if you don’t have a decent Passion Sunday?
In Sunday’s Gospel – the Gospel of Passion Sunday – we heard “Before Abraham was, I AM.” These are the words of Jesus, identifying Himself with the God of Abraham.
Furthermore, to make matters worse for Himself, He also says, “Abraham longed to see my day.” Here He is also identifying Himself with the Promise made to Abraham, that through Abraham (and his descendants) all the nations of the world would be blessed. Blessed! Saved from sin and made whole again! All nations! All humans!
That is, through the line of Abraham the Redeemer of the World would come. The religious leaders knew this. They became very angry upon hearing these words of Jesus. There could be only death for a man who made a public claim like this.
This is not just a “wanting” to put Him to death. This is planning the actual deed. (Of course, it is God’s Almighty will that is working through the religious leaders, through the emotional mobs, and through the officials of the Empire.) But it is death for Jesus now.
And so the Church directs our meditations during these days to the impending Suffering and Death of Jesus. The darkness is falling; it is time to meditate on the Passion. It is the week of Passion Sunday.