The Call to Worship and Invocation
We come into your house this morning, praising your faithfulness, giving thanks for your mercy, seeking your joy.
Heavenly Father, we magnify and lift your Holy Name. We thank you for this day of life and vow to worship You with a heart of praise. Fill us with Your peace today. Amen.
Morning Hymn -- Jesus the Light of the World
Performed by Alfred Street Baptist Church
Scripture Reading -- Matthew 26:26-36
26 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.
27 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it;
28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.
29 But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father's kingdom.
30 And when they had sung an hymn, they went out into the mount of Olives.
31 Then saith Jesus unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad.
32 But after I am risen again, I will go before you into Galilee.
33 Peter answered and said unto him, Though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will I never be offended.
34 Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.
35 Peter said unto him, Though I should die with thee, yet will I not deny thee. Likewise also said all the disciples.
36 Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen, Amen.
I believe in God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth. And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried;
The third day he rose from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty, from thence He shall come to judge the quick and the dead. I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Holy Catholic Church, the Communion of Saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. Amen.
Altar Call/Pastoral Prayer –
We are praying for you:
Rev. Keith Johnson, Octavian Rodriquez, Angelikka Carter, James Spaulding, Rev. and Mrs. Braxton, Dwaine Giggans,
Johnie Mae Williams, Christine Ferguson, Rev. Michael Henderson, Rev. Veronica Buckner, Curtis and Faye Bomar, Jean Wilson and Family, Pinkie Westry, Brother Daniel, Lowe's Employees and Families at Cottle Store
Dear Heavenly Father,
We come before you on this Palm Sunday with thanksgiving and praise. Father, we adore You and magnify Your Name. You are greatly to be praised for laying down your life for us, our sins and our transgressions. Lord, we pray that you will forgive our acts, words and deeds that were not pleasing in Your sight. We pray that You will continue to lead and guide us as we face the many challenges that this life presents.
We come now with a fervent plea for this land. We are plagued by the coronavirus, other health issues, financial matters, and just plain sin, and we ask that You will hear our prayer and heal our land. We have come short and are not worthy to gather the crumbs from under your Holy table, yet You feed and comfort us and for that we are grateful.
Now Lord, as we enter another week of "Shelter In Place" we enter it with the confidence that You are with us and that You are our constant source of protection. It is with this assurance that we will pray the prayer that we were taught as little children: "Now I lay me down to sleep. I pray the Lord my soul to keep. If I should die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take." Amen.
Performed by Dr. Ethel Caffie-Austin
Song of Praise - God Is Good
Tithes and Offerings
"Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver." 2nd Chronicles 9:7
Visit our Gift section on the Gift tab. You may give via credit cards, PayPal and Givelify.com (Download Givelify to your Smartphone). If you prefer, mail your tithes and offerings to First AMEZ Church, 95 S. 20th Street, San Jose CA 95116
The Sermonic Scripture - Mark 11:7-11
7 And they brought the colt to Jesus, and cast their garments on him; and he sat upon him.
8 And many spread their garments in the way: and others cut down branches off the trees, and strewed them in the way.
9 And they that went before, and they that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna; Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord:
10 Blessed be the kingdom of our father David, that cometh in the name of the Lord: Hosanna in the highest. 11 And Jesus entered into Jerusalem, and into the temple: and when he had looked round about upon all things, and now the eventide was come, he went out unto Bethany with the twelve. (King James Version)
Performed by Chester D.T. Baldwin
Click Music icon for sound
Today marks the beginning of Holy Week. It is significant to note that one-third of the Gospel of Mark (Chapters 11 through 15) is taken up with the recording of what happened during Holy Week. The focus of Jesus’ earthly ministry was concentrated in this short period of five Chapters. His primary mission in the world was to procure man’s salvation by His death on the cross. Here is the heart of Christianity. Come with me as we take a journey through Holy Week.
Sunday (Mark 11:1-11)
On Palm Sunday, Jesus made the triumphant entry into Jerusalem. Jesus presented himself to the Jewish nation as her Messiah. The crowd of Galilean pilgrims accompanied Him down the western slope of the Mount of Olives. As they walked, they spread garments and palm leaves as a carpet in the street for the donkey on which he rode.
The crowd was excited and their shouts of praise showed that they expected Jesus to enter the Holy City in triumph and set up his messianic kingdom on earth. But, we learn from the other Gospels that the Jewish leaders rejected Jesus, and so, the “triumphal entry” ended in tears. Luke 19:41 says,
“And when we was come near, he beheld the City and wept over it.” This was Israel’s last opportunity to accept Jesus of Nazareth as her Messiah and they rejected him big time!
That was Palm Sunday, now let’s look at Monday.
Monday (Mark 11:12-19)
Monday was, what I call a “double C” day! A day of Cursing and Cleansing!
On the way back into Jerusalem from Bethany, Jesus saw a fig tree with leaves on it. Since fig trees normally have fruit before leaves, He naturally expected to find some ripe figs waiting for him. When he found no fruit, Jesus CURSED, the tree.
Now, history says that some have criticized the Master for cursing the tree. But there is a lesson here, God doesn’t like hypocrites – You know the kind, looking holy and full of hell. So, the tree was perpetrating as a fig tree – it had leaves, but no fruit. So, when Jesus “cursed” the tree – that was the first “C.”
And, I need to tell you right now, there’s a difference between “Cussing” the tree and “cursing” the tree. Jesus did not use profane language and “Cuss” the tree out. He simply put a “curse” on the tree, saying –
“Let no one ever again eat fruit from you.” (Mark 11:14)
Now, the second “C” was Cleansing the Temple.
Jesus went into the Temple and began to cast out them that sold and bought in the temple. He overthrew the tables of the Money Changers and the seats of those who sold doves. Not only that, he would not allow that any man should carry any vessel through the Temple. Mark Chapter 11, verse 17, tells us,
17 And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? but ye have made it a den of thieves.”
There is no doubt about it. Jesus cleaned house! And, when he finished, he left and went back to Bethany. Now, we’re ready for Tuesday.
Mark lets us know that Tuesday was the busiest day of Holy Week.
This Tuesday was the last day of Jesus’ public ministry.
Mark recorded some 13 events as taking place on Tuesday.
And, even though 13 events are recorded, the event that took “center stage” was the questioning of Jesus’ authority.
On Tuesday, when Jesus went back into Jerusalem, he came to the same Temple that he had cleansed the day before. And, as he began teaching the priests, scribes and elders began to question Him,
“By what authority and who’s authority do you do thee things?”
In other words, who gave you the authority to cleanse the Temple?
By what authority do you cut out our profits?
Who told you to mess with our money changing and selling?
Who gave you the power to come into the temple that we had built and stop our selling?
Jesus said, “I will answer all of your questions if you will just answer one for me. Where did John get his authority?
Obviously, the answer to both questions was the same; but the Jewish leaders refused to commit themselves because they didn’t want to look bad. They wanted Jesus to look bad. So, they said, “We cannot tell.” Hearing their response, Jesus refused to answer their question.
After a very busy Tuesday, there is no record of any activity on Wednesday. We conclude that it was a “quiet” Wednesday!
I personally believe that, although it may have been quiet, Jesus was busy communing with the Father because the next day he communed with THE 12.
Thursday – The Last Supper and the Institution of the Lord’s Supper
The Last Supper
Mark writes in Chapter 14 that Jesus ate the Passover meal with His disciples and, while they were eating, Jesus told them – “One of you will betray me.” The scripture goes on to say,
“And they began to be sorrowful and say unto Him – one by one – “Is it I?” And another said, Is it I? And, he answered and said unto them, ‘it is one of the twelve that dippeth with me in the dish’.”
Now listen to what Matthew 26:25 says happened.
“Then Judas, which betrayed him answered and said, Master is it I?” He said unto him, Thou hast said.”
The Lord’s Supper
And, as they were eating,
Jesus took bread and blessed it and brake it and gave it to his disciples and said – take, eat – this is my body.
And, he took the cup and gave thanks and gave it to them saying, “drink ye all of it. For this is my blood of the New Testament which is shed for many for the remission of sins.”
It was on this occasion that Jesus instituted the Lord’s Supper – Holy Communion. And, after they finished supper a lot happened –
They went out to the Mount of Olives!
He predicted Peter’s denial.
Jesus prayed in Gethsemane, ‘til sweat dropped like blood from his brow.
They arrested Jesus and took Him to Caiaphas the High Priest where the scribes and elders were assembled.
After much debate, Matthew 26:66 says the High Priest asked, “What think ye?” And, they answered and said, “He is guilty of death.”
A Bad Friday
When Jesus was sentenced to death, it was surely a bad Friday (or a GOOD FRIDAY) depending on how you look at it. If you had been there and had little faith, it was a bad Friday. But, if you really got to know Jesus, then it was a Good Friday!
In Matthew 27 it says that “early the next morning – Friday morning -- Pilate questioned Jesus.
Now Pilate knew that Jesus was innocent of the charges brought by the multitude. Remember in Luke 23, they had accused him of “perverting the nation, and forbidding to give tribute to Caesar, saying that he himself is Christ a King.” And, it was here that Pilate quoted these famous words, “ . . . I have found no fault in this man. . . .” (Luke 23:14)
But, because the crowd wanted Jesus crucified, Pilate wasn’t strong enough to follow his conscience. So, he turned Jesus over to the soldiers.
They stripped him,
Put a purple robe on him,
Made him a crown of thorns and placed it on his head,
And, they mocked him, spit on him, beat him;
Yet, he never said a word!
They put a cross on his back.
They led him to Calvary, and they made a black man named Simon carry his cross.
And, when they got to Calvary – or Golgotha’s Hill, the place of the Skull – they hung Jesus between two thieves and crucified him.
Thank God, the WEEK OR THE WORD doesn’t end there!
Saturday, Matthew 27:63
Matthew says that on the next day – Saturday – the chief priest and Pharisees went to Pilate saying,
“We remember that deceiver saying on the third day he would rise again. So we need to make sure the tomb is sealed and that guards are there so his disciples can’t come and steal his body and say he rose from the dead!”
[This is not how the story ends. Next Sunday we will see what happened.]
INVITATION TO DISCIPLESHIP -
Now is the time when we offer Christ to you. If you wish to unite with our Church, please call (408) 688-6980.
Please check your text messages and email for further updates on the events and news about the schedule for all local AMEZ services. In accordance with the directives of the City of San Jose, our on-site services are suspended until further notice. This includes Bible Study and choir rehearsals. Our next on-site service to be announced.
Sermon - The Passion of Christ