“Truly this man was the Son of God!”

Sunday Readings' Discussion Questions
Palm Sunday
, Apr. 1, 2012 (PalmB)
From the
Center for Liturgy at Saint Louis University

Sunday Mass Readings

Podcast of the Readings 
Video of Reflections on Readings
Lecturas y Comentarios 
New American Bible
Prayer of the Hours
BQ: What sacraments did Jesus institute on Holy Thursday?

Questions on Sunday's Readings for use by discussion groups,
prayer groups, or for individual prayer.

First Reading

Isaiah 50:4-7

1. Name some people who have spoken on God’s behalf and have “set their faces like flint” when confronted by injustice. Are you restrained about standing up for justice if it involves some discomfort for you? What injustice do you feel strongly about? What can you do to help make it right?

2. God opens your ears many times and in many ways. Give some reasons why God would come to you with messages “morning after morning.”

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 22: 8-9, 17-18, 19-20, 23-24

1. The psalmist speaks of those who scoff at him and mock him. In what way can you identify with those who scoff
at our Savior and mock him with parted lips?

2. The Response is, "My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?" Why do you think our Lord would have uttered these words at the time of his Passion? What had changed for God's son? Had God changed?

Second Reading
Philippians 2:6-11

1. Describe the “emptying in Jesus’ life. Go from his birth to his death, as much as you are able. What is the power of emptiness?

2. Is there anything in your life that helps you imitate Jesus in being open and empty? On the other hand, are there desires that make you regard equality with God as something you should achieve?

Mark 14:1-15:47

1. The woman was “wasting” expensive perfumed oil on Jesus. Does this relate to God wasting his love on humankind? How is the Eucharist a continuation of Christ’s “self-wasting” on us? Does your busy schedule allow time to “waste” on love?

2. Throughout his passion, who stayed and who didn’t stay with Jesus? Which group would you have found yourself with? Did Jesus feel abandoned by the one he loved most, the Father? How terrible would such a loss be for him? What does this suffering say to you?

Sunday Bible Study Group
Please comment on the Sunday Readings. May we be blessed by God's words as reflected in your thoughts and experience-sharing. 

1 comment:

  1. Barry Lamont9:44 AM

    David writes this psalm almost as though
    it were planned to be part of the Passion of Christ.
    It is as though David knew what was coming
    when Christ was crucified.
    Its theme is that the sufferings
    of the righteous man
    will restore life to humanity.
    The Psalm also becomes the prayer of Christ
    at the time of his crucifixion
    and speaks of the suffering that our Savior
    experienced on our behalf.

    People are the same today
    as they were back then,
    when Jesus was being led to the cross.
    We scoff at him; we mock him;
    we wag our heads; and hurl insults at him.

    Because he becomes contemptible in our eyes.
    He reminds us that we are a sinful people;
    he convicts us; he catches us in the lie;
    he embarrasses us; he exposes us;
    he accuses us of being hypocrites.

    He holds us to a higher standard;
    he speaks directly to God;
    he claims to be God's Son;
    and we reject him for this; and mock him.
    We do not move to assist him;
    let God rescue him –
    “He relied on the Lord – let him deliver him;
    let him rescue him, if he loves him.”

    These are the same words used by those
    who conspired against Jesus
    when he was dying on the cross.
    They did not realize that the suffering and death
    of an innocent servant
    would restore life for sinful man.
    The words they spoke
    were to be fulfilled,
    not by Jesus coming down from the cross,
    but by sinful humanity like us
    being delivered, forgiven, and lifted up.

    The psalm describes the Passion of Christ,
    and we know that what seemed like
    a moment of weakness for Christ
    became a source of strength
    for the rest of us.
    God reverses this righteous man’s condition –
    “But you, O Lord, be not far from me;
    O my help, hasten to aid me.”

    Hope returns, the righteous man is delivered,
    And he celebrates his deliverance--
    “I will proclaim your name to my brethren;
    in the midst of the assembly I will praise you:
    You who fear the Lord, praise him ....”

    Because Jesus humbled himself
    and accepted death on the cross,
    “God greatly exalted him
    and bestowed on him
    the name that is above every name.”