Peace Lutheran Church Sussex, Wisconsin

Congregation at Prayer

April 5, 2020: Table of Duties — Of Citizens

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Catechesis Notes for the Week —Psalm 118—The Passover Psalm—The liturgy of the Old Testament Passover took place around the family table.  The Passover feast included the telling of the story of the Lord’s mighty act of redemption for Israel through the blood of the Passover Lamb.  Children were to ask questions, “What is the meaning of this night, of this meal, of the bitter herbs and spices, etc.?”  The head of the family would answer the questions and faithfully lead the family in remembering all that God had done to deliver them from slavery.  Psalm 118 was central to their prayers.  It begins with one of the most repeated antiphons in the psalms: “Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! Because His mercy endures forever.”  The goodness and mercy of God that redeemed Israel from slavery came to fulfillment in Jesus’ suffering and death upon the cross.  The pilgrims on Palm Sunday applied the language of the Passover psalm to Jesus: “Hosanna to the Son of David. Save now, I pray, O Lord; O Lord, I pray, send now prosperity. Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!”  To be sure, they did not realize that He would suffer and die on Good Friday.  But by applying the words of the Passover psalm to Him, they identified Him as the Messiah and that the sacrifice of His body and blood upon the cross was His destiny.  This psalm has long enjoyed a prominent place in the Church’s liturgy.  It is not only prayed by the Church during Holy Week as we see the true Passover Lamb lifted up on the altar of the cross for our salvation, but it is also sung throughout Eastertide with words that are familiar to every Christian: “The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone. This was the Lord’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes.  This is the day which the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.” CP200405

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April 5, 2020: Holy Week — Palmarum Sunday

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April 5, 2020: Palm Sunday

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