Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Palm Sunday

Into the City He rides; 
but not as conquering hero.
He rides not in majesty, 
but in soul-felt lowly sorrow.
He rides on a donkey’s foal 
caught up in the flow
of acclaim: of shallow 
celebrity and mirth,
His passion’s start will show
this fame’s full worth.
The eve of His last dark 
Passover draws nigh
and His sweet soul 
does languish with a sigh.

He knows full-well the fate 
of those who enter by this gate.
The prophets stoned, 
or cast down wells
to drown in irksome mud.i
He knows full-well His fate 
that’s set by entering this gate.
His body scourged and strung on high
to drain its Precious Blood.
He knows full-well the fate 
of sinners held behind the gate
of Hades – bound awhile – awaiting Him
to ’claim their hapless good.

We welcome Him 
with cheers and hollow hoots.
We greet our own expectations 
and sallow hopes.
Hosanna to the Son of David!
Hosanna liberating Prince!
Hosanna provider of our need!
Hosanna social reformer!
Hosanna to God’s prophet deer!
Hosanna kind and good teacher!
Hosanna wonder-working seer!
We cast our rags before his feet,
hoping that He’ll stoop and put them on
and what we most desire He’ll then become:
be re-made in our image, accept the gown
of our threadbare renown:
and justify our empty fabrication.

He passes by, ignoring our desires.
His eyes are fixed on a far greater prize:
His countenance incipient with glory:
the kind that’s only won through travail,
pain, passion, death and betrayal,
He is the spotless host:
the Lamb of God.
He alone may pass the veil.
He willingly enters the Temple.

Showing Himself to the priest,
He bows his head
and accepts the garland wreath
of our disaffected thorny wroth.
The sacrifice is now chosen,
the oblation sanctified:
the offertory complete and done.
iJer 38:5-6.

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