The last week of Jesus’ life is commonly referred to as the Holy Week. It was a significant period for Christians around the world since it marked the events leading up to Easter Sunday, which commemorates Jesus’ resurrection from the dead. During this week, Jesus engaged in several activities that have been recorded in the Bible and have become integral parts of Christian teachings.
The Holy Week began with Palm Sunday, which marks Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem. On this day, Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey while people laid palm branches on the road as a sign of honor and respect. This event fulfilled the prophecy in Zechariah 9:9, which states that the Messiah would enter Jerusalem on a donkey.
Cleansing of the Temple
On Monday, Jesus entered the temple and found merchants and money changers selling their goods in the temple courts. He became angry and overturned their tables, saying that they had turned his Father’s house into a den of thieves (Matthew 21:13). This action demonstrated Jesus’ zeal for God’s house and his disapproval of corrupt practices.
Teaching in the Temple
During Tuesday and Wednesday, Jesus spent time teaching in the temple courts. He spoke about various topics such as humility (Matthew 23), hypocrisy (Matthew 24), and his second coming (Matthew 25). His teachings emphasized love for God and others, as well as preparation for eternity.
The Last Supper
On Thursday evening, Jesus gathered with his disciples to celebrate Passover. During this meal, he established what is now known as communion or the Lord’s Supper.
He took bread and wine, blessed them, and gave them to his disciples to eat and drink. He also predicted that one of them would betray him (John 13:21) and that Peter would deny him three times (Matthew 26:34).
Prayer in Gethsemane
After the Last Supper, Jesus went to pray in the garden of Gethsemane. He asked his disciples to keep watch with him, but they fell asleep.
Jesus prayed fervently, asking God to remove the cup of suffering from him if it was possible. However, he ultimately submitted to God’s will and said, “Not my will, but yours be done” (Luke 22:42).
Arrest and Trial
Later that night, Judas Iscariot betrayed Jesus by identifying him with a kiss. Jesus was then arrested and brought before the Jewish leaders for trial. He was falsely accused of blasphemy and sentenced to death.
Crucifixion and Death
On Friday, Jesus was crucified on a cross along with two criminals. He suffered excruciating pain and ridicule as he hung on the cross for several hours. He eventually died and was buried in a tomb.
The last week of Jesus’ life was full of significant events that have become central to Christian faith and teachings. It is a time for reflection on Jesus’ sacrifice for humanity and a reminder of his love for us all.