On Palm Sunday we always have one of the long Gospel accounts of the suffering and death of Jesus. Last year we had Luke’s account, next year we will have Mark’s. And, while Matthew, Mark and Luke all give us the same wonderful story, each of them had a different way of presenting the events.
Mark set out to disprove those who said Jesus could not be the Messiah because he was shamefully put to death. Mark’s heroic account of Our Lord’s suffering presents him as the great hero who submitted himself to that shameful execution in a great act of love that saved us, crowning him as the Messiah.
Luke describes the way Jesus, after putting self-love to death in the Garden of Gethsemani, demonstrated his selflessness by refusing the sympathy of the women of Jerusalem and of the good thief.
Matthew’s account today was the answer to the Pharisees who claimed Jesus had been out to destroy the Prophets. For every movement in Our Lord’s long final day Matthew pointed out how Jesus was following the script written by the Prophets. The rent down the middle of the temple’s veil was the surrender of the Old Testament before the glory of the Messiah accomplishing his great mission.