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Daily Devotional • April 2
Palm Sunday

Chase Benefiel
The King of Glory
A Reading from Psalm 24

1 The earth is the Lord’s and all that is in it,
    the world, and those who live in it,
2 for he has founded it on the seas
    and established it on the rivers.
3 Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord?
  And who shall stand in his holy place?
4 Those who have clean hands and pure hearts,
   who do not lift up their souls to what is false
   and do not swear deceitfully.
5 They will receive blessing from the Lord
   and vindication from the God of their salvation.
6 Such is the company of those who seek him,
  who seek the face of the God of Jacob. 
7 Lift up your heads, O gates!
  and be lifted up, O ancient doors,
  that the King of glory may come in!
8 Who is the King of glory?
  The Lord, strong and mighty,
  the Lord, mighty in battle.
9 Lift up your heads, O gates!
  and be lifted up, O ancient doors,
  that the King of glory may come in!
10 Who is this King of glory?
  The Lord of hosts,
  he is the King of glory.

Who is this “King of Glory,” exactly? Sometimes the Bible doesn’t seem particularly clear on this question — and especially during Holy Week. Is this God or is this just another crucified man? Is this the straight path in the desert for our God? Is this the narrow gate or the wide gate?

It’s just the first day of Holy Week; we have a long way to go before any questions are answered. But the psalm for today begins the answer to our questions about this strange savior. Who, now, is this “King of Glory”? “The Lord of Hosts, he is this King of Glory. The Lord: strong and mighty and mighty in battle. Even he is the King of Glory.”

There’s no reason to act like we don’t know who this is — Jesus Christ, of course — but today is odd. We wave palm branches crying out “Save us!” But the cries turn quickly to “crucify him.”

Somehow both cries mean the same thing. We have one day liturgically where our words match our hearts: we want a savior, but we hate being saved. We’re addicted to the things that kill us. We want to be saved, but when he offers salvation we want him killed.

We’re tough nuts to crack. That’s why we get a Savior who is the Lord, strong and mighty in battle. This week Jesus is going to war against sin and death and He’s going to win. Sing, my tongue, the glorious battle.

Chase Benefiel is a friend, Tennesseean, preacher, and student (in that order) currently finishing his M.Div. at Duke Divinity School.

Daily Devotional Cycle of Prayer

Today we pray for:

Province of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan
Christ Church Episcopal, Tulsa, Oklahoma
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