My dad’s been a church musician for years. I cut my musical teeth filling in where needed: whichever instrument, whichever voice part. Also: whichever role in the large-scale musicals the church staged, where I was an odd combination of ringer and gofer. Sometimes I sang the role that was too high or too difficult for others.
Luke describes Jesus riding heroically into Jerusalem on Palm/Passion Sunday. According to archetypal imagery, is Jesus riding to heroic victory or tragic defeat?
Luke offers hints along the way that the trajectory between Palm Sunday and Good Friday is something other than utter failure, but they’re subtle hints: Jesus claims the authority to pardon even as he himself is hanging on the executioner’s cross; as he dies, he continues to discuss his kingdom and paradise.
Some preachers complain about the Palm Sunday lectionary, which puts together the “palm” and the “passion” Gospel texts. One complaint relates to dissonance: it’s not easy to pair a celebratory parade with a trial and execution. Another complaint concerns scope: there is too much theological ground to cover and too much liturgical time required.