Holy Week Devotionals
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Holy Week Devotional

Holy WeekHoly Week is one of the oldest Christian observances we know. The first recorded celebration of it comes from a woman named Egeria who traveled to Jerusalem as a pilgrim in the 4th century A.D. There she witnessed Holy Week ceremonies and recorded them in her diary (see Egeria's Travels, 1999), which means Holy Week observances are at least 1,700 years old.

In the days between Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday, we see the final week of Jesus' life on earth. This week was so important that the Gospel of Mark devotes about 40 percent of its pages to this one week. This was the great climax of our Lord's ministry on earth, when He came to Jerusalem to reveal His most crucial teachings. And in the ensuing conflict with Jerusalem's leaders, He was crucified. But on the third day, God raised Him from death. Holy Week begins with Jesus' entry into Jerusalem (Palm Sunday) and ends with Jesus' resurrection (Easter).

Take time this week to reflect on these great events. Read the assigned passages each day. Pay attention to where God may be leading your thoughts. Turn this week into "uncommon time"—time that is not ordinary or common; time that is set apart, and time that anticipates the church's great celebration of Easter. Our preparation during the week can completely change our celebration next Sunday.

To download all of the devotionals in a pdf, click here.

God, my God!
Why would you abandon me now?
Why do you remain distant,
refusing to answer my tearful cries in the day
and my desperate cries for your help in the night?
I can’t stop sobbing.
Where are you, my God?
Yet, I know that you are most holy; it’s indisputable.
You are God Enthroned, surrounded with songs,

He replied to them, “Now is the time for the Son of Man to be glorified. Let me make this clear: A single grain of wheat will never be more than a single grain of wheat unless it drops into the ground and dies. Because then it sprouts and produces a great harvest of wheat - all because one grain died.
The person who loves his life and pampers himself will miss true life! But the one who detaches his life from this world and abandons himself to me, will find true life and enjoy it forever! If you want to be my disciple, follow me and you will go where I am going. And if you truly follow me as my disciple, the Father will shower his favor upon your life.

Even though I am torn within, and my soul is in turmoil, I will not ask the Father to rescue me from this hour of trial. For I have come to fulfill my purpose—to offer myself to God. So, Father, bring glory to your name!” Then suddenly a booming voice was heard from the sky, “I have glorified my name! And I will glorify it through you again!”
The audible voice of God startled the crowd standing nearby. Some thought it was only thunder, yet others said, “An angel just spoke to him!”
Then Jesus told them, “The voice you heard was not for my benefit, but for yours—to help you believe. From this moment on, everything in this worlds is about to change, for the ruler of this dark world will be overthrown. And I will do this when I am lifted up off the ground and when I draw the hearts of people to gather them to me.” he said this to indicate that he would die by being lifted up on the cross.
People from the crowd spoke up and said, “Die? How could the Anointed One die? The Word of God says that the Anointed One will live with us forever, but you just said that the Son of Man must be lifted up from the earth. And who is this Son of Man anyway?
Jesus replied, “You will have the light shining with you for only a little while longer. While you still have me, walk in the light, so that the darkness doesn’t overtake you. For when you walk in the dark you have no idea where you’re going. So believe and cling to the light while I am with you, so that you will become children of light.” After saying this, Jesus then entered into the crowd and hid himself from them.

-John 12:27-36

Before their evening meal had begun, the accuser had already planted betrayal into the heart of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon.
Now Jesus was fully aware that the Father had placed all things under his control, for he had come from God and was about to go back to be with him So he got up from the meal and took off his outer robe, and took a towel and wrapped it around his waist. Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ dirty feet and dry them with his towel.
But when Jesus got to Simon Peter, he objected and said “I can’t let you wash my dirty feet—you’re my Lord!”
Jesus replied, “You don’t understand yet the meaning of what I’m doing, but soon it will be clear to you.”
Peter looked at Jesus and said, “You’ll never wash my dirty feet— never!”
“But Peter, if you don’t allow me to wash you feet,” Jesus responded, “then you will not be able to share life with me.”
So Peter the Rock said, “Lord, in that case, don’t just wash my feet, wash my hands and my head too!”
Jesus said to him, “You are already clean. You’ve been washed completely and you just need your feet to be cleansed—but that can’t be said of all of you.” For Jesus knew which one was about to betray him, and that’s why he told them that not all of them were clean.
After washing their feet, he put his robe on and returned to his place at the table. “Do you understand what I just did?” Jesus said. “You’ve called me your teacher and lord, and you’re right, for that’s who I am. So if I’m your teacher and lord and have just washed your dirty feet, then you should follow the example that I’ve set for you and wash one another’s dirty feet. Now do for ach other what I have just done for you.
“So I give you now a new commandment: Love each other just as much as I have loved you. For when you demonstrate the same love I have for you by loving one another, everyone will know that you’re my true followers.”

-John 13:2-15, 34-35

Jesus carried his own cross out of the city to the place called “The Skull,” which in Aramaic is Golgotha. And there they nailed him to the cross. He was crucified, along with two others, one on each side with Jesus in the middle. Pilate had them post a sign over the cross, which was written in three languages—Aramaic, Latin, and Greek. Many of the people of Jerusalem read the sign, for he was crucified near the city. They sign stated: “Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.”
But the chief priests of the Jews said to Pilate, “You must change the sign! Don’t let is say, ‘King of the Jews!’” Pilate responded, “What I have written will remain!”
Now when the soldiers crucified Jesus, they divided up this clothes into four shares, one for each of them. But his tunic was seamless, woven from the top to the bottom as a single garment. So the soldiers said to each other, “Don’t tear it—let’s throw dice to see who gets it!” The soldiers did all of this not knowing they fulfilled the Scripture that says, “They divided my garments among them and gambled for my garment.”
Miriam, Jesus’ mother, was standing next to his cross, along with Miriam’s sister, Miriam the wife of Clopas, and Miriam Magdalene. So when Jesus looked down and saw the disciple he loved standing with her, he said, “Mother, look—John will be a son to you.” Then he said, “John, look—she will be a mother to you!” From that day on , John accepted Mary into his home as one of his own family.
Jesus knew that his mission was accomplished, and to fulfill the Scripture, Jesus said: “I am thirsty.”
A jar of sour wine was sitting nearby, so they soaked a sponge with it and put it on the stalk of hyssop and raised it to his lips. When he had sipped the sour wine, he said, “It is finished, my bride!” Then he bowed his head and surrendered his spirit to God.

-John 19:17-30

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