Throughout Holy Week (March 25 through April 1 this year) we will remember the events that led to Jesus’ horrific death on the cross and his glorious resurrection from the dead. Once again, we will consider Jesus’ arrival in Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, the weight of his crucifixion on Good Friday, and the joy of his resurrection on Easter Sunday. To help us remember, the GCI Media Department has produced three short videos (embedded below). To download them, click on the small icon above each one. Below each video is a reading to be shared after each video is watched. Using these videos for the call to worship in Holy Week services would work well with the RCL-synced sermons provided in GCI Equipper for the Holy Week services.
Read this following the Arrival video:
“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” The crowds jubilantly welcomed Jesus on Palm Sunday, as their hoped-for Redeemer. They anticipated the building of his kingdom prophesied in Ezekiel 17:23-24, “On the mountain height of Israel will I plant it, that it may bear branches and produce fruit and become a noble cedar. And under it will dwell every kind of bird; in the shade of its branches birds of every sort will nest. And all the trees of the field shall know that I am the Lord; I bring low the high tree, and make high the low tree, dry up the green tree, and make the dry tree flourish. I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will do it.” As the crowd joyfully welcomed Jesus—laying palm branches and their hearts at the feet of Jesus—so we welcome him into our lives today. Jesus, we praise your name and welcome you as the Lord of our lives.
Read this following the Atonement video:
Christ sacrificed his life’s blood to set us free, which means that our sins are now forgiven. Christ did this because God was so kind to us. God has great wisdom and understanding (Ephesians 1: 7-8). When Jesus died on the cross. He laid down his perfect life as an atonement for our imperfect lives. On the cross, God demonstrated his perfect justice and unending mercy. Taunted as he took humanity’s punishment on himself. Jesus asked his Father to forgive us. Because Jesus cried out to God, “Why have you forsaken me?” we can cry out to God, “You have accepted me!” Because of Christ’s finished work on the cross, we have new life!
Note: If your congregation does not have a Good Friday service, consider inviting some friends and neighbors over for dinner on Good Friday evening. Show the film and read the message of forgiveness. Discuss these questions as a group:
- What does forgiveness mean to you personally?
- How has forgiveness changed your life?
Invite your neighbors and friends to attend your church’s Easter Sunday celebration with you!
Read this following the Resurrection video:
With the resurrection of Jesus we celebrate victory over sin and death, and the proof that Jesus is our Messiah. We celebrate the peace of Christ, and the joy of joining him in building his eternal Kingdom. Darkness has become light, and death has become life—Christ is risen! Let us give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! Because of his great mercy he gave us new life by raising Jesus Christ from death. This fills us with a living hope (1 Peter 1:3).