Jesus becomes an enemy of the religious elite and delivers the Olivet Discourse.
By Tuesday, Jesus’ unwillingness to obey the religious elite had made him an enemy to Israel’s leaders. They challenge Jesus with their assumptions and doctrinal traditions, hoping to publicly prove that Jesus is a fraud — a criminal and a liar who is set on disrupting their control. But Jesus keeps telling the truth, showing the leaders how the mistake is their own. What irony! They’re mad at God for not being godly enough, according to their own judgment (see Matt. 21:23 – 27; Mark 11:27 – 33; Luke 20:1 – 8).
Jesus predicts that the Roman armies will one day surround Jerusalem and destroy the city and its temple, but his disciples struggle to understand this and ask him when it’s going to happen.
In a speech sometimes referred to as the Olivet Discourse, Jesus gives a few vague images of what’s to come. He predicts his death but also assures the disciples that his death will not be the end. He says he will resurrect and continue living after death, before eventually returning to fully establish his Kingdom on Earth. Jesus cautions the disciples against trusting people who say they know the signs of the end times. Those so-called “signs” (like natural disasters, wars, and rumors of conflict) are normal parts of the world being renewed. Instead of losing focus by getting wrapped up in that fear, Jesus urges his followers to remain focused on him and follow his loving way. Keep living into the Kingdom of God, he says, and don’t stop spreading Jesus’ good news to all people.
In today’s video, venture further into key themes in the Olivet Discourse by tracing the biblical concept of the Day of the Lord, a day where God will bring his judgment against evil and allow a new creation to flourish, ultimately accomplished through Jesus’ death and resurrection.
Prayer for Holy Tuesday
O Lord our God, whose blessed Son gave his back to be whipped and did not hide his face from shame and spitting: Give us grace to accept joyfully the sufferings of the present time, confident of the glory that shall be revealed; through Jesus Christ our Lord who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
— Book of Common Prayer