Did you shout “Hosanna” on Palm Sunday? Good for you. But what are you going to say on Friday? It’s easy to praise God when the crowd is doing the same. When it isn’t Palm Sunday, though, and the crowds are calling for a crucifixion, what will you say?
Have you sworn your unwavering loyalty to Jesus? Good for you. That’s easy to do when you’re in the upper room surrounded by friends. What will you say later, around the fire, when devotion has a price?
When we are in our church clothes surrounded by people who share our beliefs, there isn’t any reason to hide our faith. We can sing praises without judgment. There is little chance of being called ignorant or intolerant. The test comes, though, when we go out into the community and the workplace. Because there, we might face judgment. We might encounter rejection. Some intellectuals may think us simple. Some will call us bigots because of a stance on social issues. There is a price, as there always is, when we proclaim Christ in a world that hates Christ.
It isn’t always going to be Palm Sunday, and following Jesus isn’t always going to be popular. We aren’t always going to be in the upper room where it’s easy to pledge commitment. The depth of our commitment is shown in those times when it isn’t easy.
Sometimes the crowd gets it right, like they did on Palm Sunday.
When the crowd turns on Jesus, as crowds always do, where will you be?