The Holy Week
The next morning, which was April the ninth, everybody was excited for the Entry Sunday celebration. It would take place in The Holy Community Square, which was part of the same building. Even the Catholics would be celebrating with Evangelicals.
The Holy Community had a television station called "HCB 1234.56." On that morning, Pastor Moses appeared on the television. He looked happy. Then he spoke:
"Brothers and sisters. Today is the day when our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ entered into the city of Jerusalem. Almost the whole city came out to welcome him. But the most important thing is: have you welcomed him into your life? So today, we'll be celebrating this wonderful and holy event in the Holy Community Square. Someone will be riding a donkey. I can't tell you who it is, because I want to make it a surprise for all of you. Even our Catholic brothers and sisters will be celebrating with us. In fact, they'll be with us the whole week. Thank you and have a blessed day!"
The Devilists weren't listening when Pastor Moses was speaking, because they could not stand the name of Jesus. They didn't care about Christian events anyway.
Meanwhile, Joshua was feeling nervous but very happy at the same time. He would be riding a donkey like Jesus. Many people would be walking around him shouting, "Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!" Of course, they will not be saying this to him, but to the Lord. He will only be a representation of Jesus when he entered Jerusalem.
Everyone was happy that morning. They were all dressed up very beautifully. They were wearing their flying clothes on top of their other clothes.
"So why are we wearing these clothes?" Joshua asked John while they were changing in their room.
"Because we have to fly to the Holy Community Square." He replied. "We don't need any kind of transportation to get there, because the place is very close to here. So we could use our flying clothes."
That Morning, Brother Noah was dancing while he was walking. Even Sister Bianca Adam, who looked mostly sad, looked very beautiful. Joshua didn't recognize her when he saw her that morning. He thought that she was one of the grade ten girls, because she looked very young and cute.
Brother Abraham and Sister Sarah were also present. Although they stayed in Canada most of the time, yet they never missed the Entry Sunday celebration. In fact, they never missed any important event.
Before they left the building, however, both Emily Abraham and Emily Bob ran to Joshua and hugged him. But Emily Abraham also kissed him. Even Sarah came and gave him a very big hug. This was done to encourage him not to feel nervous.
Finally, when everyone was ready, they left the building. Joshua flew beside John. They looked pleased with themselves. Joshua knew now how to fly on his own.
"Here we are!" laughed John, landing beside his mother. Then Joshua landed beside John.
"O hi, Joshua!" remarked Sister Sarah as she hugged and kissed him. "How are you, dear?"
"Thank the Lord…" replied Joshua.
As they were walking around the square, Joshua asked John, "Why do all the beautiful women like me? Why do they always hug and kiss me?"
"Maybe you have the gift of hugging and kissing," laughed John.
"Is that one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit?" laughed Joshua.
"Don't know…" replied John sadly. "I wish that women would like me as much as they like you."
"Well you have Sarah," answered Joshua, who was feeling sorry for him.
"But that's only one person," said John in a gloomy voice.
"They'll come one day," replied Joshua miserably.
"Brothers and sisters!" came the voice of Pastor Moses through the microphone. "Evangelicals and Catholics! Welcome to the Holy Community Square for the Entry Sunday celebration! Now, let us all welcome our wonderful choir, the Holy Community choir!"
Everybody clapped their hands with a great joy.
The Holy Community choir was made up of one thousand boys and one thousand girls. Both Emily Abraham and Emily Bob, along with Sarah, Samuel and Leah were part of this choir. Even Sister Bianca was one of the choir members. Pastor Moses led the choir that morning.
Then Pastor Moses spoke again, "Before we begin our worship service this morning, I would like to introduce you to our representative of Jesus, Joshua David!"
The whole place exploded with cheers for Joshua as he sat on the electrical donkey. Then he started moving around the area of the square. Next, people were bringing clothes and branches from trees and throwing them on the ground.
Many people were walking around Joshua, lifting their heads up to Heaven and shouting, "Hosanna to the Lord! Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!"
The donkey that Joshua was riding was not a real one, but it looked exactly like a regular one. It was an electrical donkey. Joshua used his controller to control it.
"Brothers and sisters," said Pastor Moses. "Let's read from the Gospel according to Saint Luke, chapter 19, verses 29 to 40."
So everyone started following along with Pastor Moses:
It happened, when he drew near to Bethsphage and Bethany, at the mountain that is called Olivet, he sent two of his disciples, saying, "Go your way into the village on the other side, in which, as you enter, you will find a colt tied, whereon no man ever yet sat. Untie it, and bring it. If anyone asks you, 'Why are you untying it?' say to him: 'The Lord needs it.'"
Those who were sent went away, and found things just as he had told them.
As they were untying the colt, its owners said to them, 'Why are you untying the colt?'
They said, The Lord needs it.'
They brought it to Jesus. They threw their cloaks on the colt, and set Jesus on them.
As he went, they spread their cloaks in the way.
As he was now getting near, at the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works which they had seen,
saying, "Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest!"
Some of the Pharisees from the multitude said to him, "Teacher, rebuke your disciples!"
He answered them, "I tell you that if these were silent, the stones would cry out."
Pastor Moses explained, "The prophet Zechariah, who lived about five hundred years before Christ, foretold about this great event when he said, 'Rejoice greatly, daughter of Zion! Shout, daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King comes to you! He is righteous, and having salvation; lowly, and riding on a donkey, even on a colt, the foal of a donkey.'"
And then the people began shouting again. They were carrying palm branches in their hands and waving them toward Heaven.
After two hours of shouting and praising, the whole place fell silent as Pastor Moses was about to do a concluding prayer.
"O Lord Jesus Christ, we thank you for coming to our world to give up your life for our sins. We are remembering your entry into Jerusalem before your crucifixion. All the people of Jerusalem welcomed you with joy into their city. But we welcome you with joy, songs of praise into our hearts and lives. We thank you for your love. Amen!"
As soon as Pastor Moses had said 'amen,' something unusual took place in the sky. A moving object was floating downward. A man clothed with the light was riding on a bright looking donkey. A group of shining people were also flying with him. They were praising God and saying, "This is the day that the Lord has made! Rejoice, all you his saints!"
When the people saw this holy scene, they fell to the ground and worshiped the Lord.
Then Jesus and the angelic beings suddenly disappeared.
After the celebration was over, they all returned to the building. Joshua went with his friends to their section. Then he and John entered their room to be changed back to their normal clothes.
"Wow!" commented John. "That was an amazing vision."
After that, they went to the restaurant to eat lunch. As soon as Joshua sat at one of the tables in the restaurant, many girls crowded around him. Then they all started shaking hands with him. Every time a girl would introduce herself to him, he would introduce John to her, because he knew how lonely John was.
"Where are the Devilists?" Joshua asked one of the girls.
"They ate early and left," she answered. "They thought that we would be talking about the Lord a lot today. So they decided to eat and leave early."
"This is really funny!" laughed Joshua. "We don't have anything to hurt them with, yet they're really afraid of us."
After the girls had left, Brother Noah called Joshua and John to his table. There were many people sitting there including Brother Abraham and Sister Sarah, Pastor Moses and Sister Bianca. There was another woman whom Joshua had never seen before.
"This is my wife," smiled Brother Noah, pointing at the unknown woman.
So she shook hands with Joshua and said, "Call me Sister Martha."
The rest of the week was full of worship services. There were services in the morning, afternoon and in the night. As usual, Pastor Moses was in charge of the services. Pastors Paul, James and Peter assisted him. So the church area was full of people for the whole week.
The next Thursday, which was April the thirteenth, everyone was preparing to celebrate the Last Supper.
"And what's the Last Supper all about?" Joshua asked John.
"Good question," replied John. "The Last Supper means that we'll eat our last supper tonight and we'll die tomorrow."
"You can't joke about this!" shouted Emily furiously. "The Last Supper is when Jesus ate his last meal with his disciples before his death. So we celebrate it each year, because the Lord commanded us to do so."
But then Sarah continued the explanation: "If this is your first time celebrating the Festival of the Resurrection after your baptism, then they'll wash your feet on this day, because Jesus did the same thing to his disciples."
"Well it is," replied Joshua nervously. "I was baptized in February. Remember?"
"Me too!" added John happily. "So they'll wash our feet tonight, right?"
"Only if you're respecting the Holy Days!" replied Emily angrily, still remembering his explanation of the Last Supper.
"I was only joking," he replied seriously. "Please forgive me."
That night, they all went to the church area. Pastor Moses was there, too. So after they were all sitting in their places, he began: "May the grace of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, be with you all. Tonight, we are here to remember the last night of our Lord's life on this earth. It is a very sad night indeed, but it is a holy sadness. On this night, however, we also wash the feet of those who are celebrating the Festival of the Resurrection for the first time after baptism. So in an hour from now, we will be calling up all these people to come with me. If you are one of them, please come with me, because we will not be calling people's names."
The worship service began with hymns about Jesus's death on the cross for our sins. These hymns touched the heart of everyone who was listening. Many people started crying, because of the sadness of these hymns. They were singing about how Jesus died and how much he suffered for our sins.
Finally, Pastor Moses stood up to speak again: "The Passover lamb in the Old Testament was a symbol of the Lord Jesus Christ. Actually, our Saviour died on the same day that the Passover lamb was killed. The lamb was killed for the sins of the people. So on the same day, our Saviour was crucified for the sins of the whole world."
Next, it was time for the washing of feet. So Joshua, John and Samuel followed Pastor Moses to another room. Then he explained: "The washing of feet will not do anything to you. It is only a representation of what Jesus did to his Disciples on his last day in this world. It will not forgive your sins. You represent the disciples, and I represent the Lord Jesus, who said in John 13:14-17, 'If then I, the Lord and the Master, have made your feet clean, it is right for you to make one another's feet clean.
I have given you an example, so that you may do what I have done to you.
Truly, I say to you, A servant is not greater than his lord; and he who is sent is not greater than the one who sent him.
If these things are clear to you, happy are you if you do them.'"
Then he washed their feet, one by one. He prayed before washing the feet of each one of them.
After that, they all returned to the church.
Pastor Moses told everyone, "Let's read from Luke 22:41-44:"
"He was withdrawn from them about a stone's throw, and he knelt down and prayed. 'Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.'
An angel from heaven appeared to him, strengthening him. Being in agony he prayed more earnestly. His sweat became like great drops of blood falling down on the ground."
In the church area, there was a very big kitchen where they ate the "Last Supper." The food was the Passover lamb, which was killed and burned according to the book of Leviticus. There were cups of "Holy Water," which were blessed by Pastor Moses. To bless the food and the water, Pastor Moses used a writer that contained the whole Bible and the S.W. He also prayed.
Before they had began eating, Pastor Moses told them, "Let me read a couple of verses to you from Luke chapter twenty-two, verses nineteen and twenty: "He took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it, and gave to them, saying, 'This is my body which is given for you. Do this in memory of me.' Likewise, he took the cup after supper, saying, 'this cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you."
That night, they would be sleeping in the church area, because these days were the holiest days in Christianity. They would be sleeping in the holiest place in that building, which was the church area.
"Oh how I love to sleep in this area," said Emily quietly as they were leaving the church.
The church area or Holy Area consisted of three huge churches and countless holy rooms. These rooms were used for holy things, such as praying, worshiping the Lord and sleeping here during holy days. Joshua was in one of these rooms when Jesus and his parents had appeared to him.
That night, Joshua had a holy dream. He dreamed that he was standing on a hill. He saw about six hundred men gathered around a man who was hanging on a cross. They were making fun of that man. Then the man said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing."
Three hours later, the man cried with a loud voice, saying, "Eli! Eli! Lama Sabachthani?" Then the man gave up the spirit. Suddenly, a thick darkness covered the whole land. And Joshua woke up.
"Good morning, brother," said John, getting out of bed. "We'll be staying in this area today, tomorrow and Sunday. These days are the holiest days in Christianity."
He didn't look at Joshua when he said this. But if he did, he would've realized that Joshua was feeling very sad. He was still thinking about the dream that he had. He finally realized how much Jesus had loved the whole world that he gave up his life for all our sins.
After breakfast, they went to the church again.
"Now," began Pastor Moses. "If anyone of you had a dream relating to this event, please come forward and share it with all of us."
Joshua went to Pastor Moses and said, "I don't like to speak in the microphone. So I'll tell it to you and then you can share it aloud."
"No problem," replied Pastor Moses. Then Joshua told him the whole dream and he returned to his seat.
So Pastor Moses told the dream in the microphone. In the end, he said, "Joshua didn't understand the Aramaic phrase that Jesus said. So here it is:
'Eli! Eli! Lama Sabachthani?'
This phrase means:
'My God! My God! Why have you forsaken me?'
When our Saviour was on the cross, God forsook him, because he was carrying the sins of the whole world. God cannot look at sin. That's why Jesus was forsaken. The Prophet David, who lived about one thousand years before our Lord was born, prophesied about this event in great details. You can find his prophecy in the twenty second Psalm."
The only light that was in the church came from the candles. These candles represented Jesus as the light of the world.
Suddenly, at twelve o'clock in the afternoon, a thick darkness fell over the whole church area. The candles stopped burning unexpectedly.
"A miracle!" they all shouted.
So then, everyone started praying. Joshua started doing the same thing. Suddenly, he fell asleep. The same dream that he had last night occurred to him again. Then he woke up. He was very sad, because he saw the Lord hung on the cross. He saw the nails in his hands and feet.
So he closed his eyes and cried, saying in a low voice, "Lord, I don't deserve all this love. Your only begotten, holy and innocent son died for a sinner such as me."
"Because I love you…" came a voice from nowhere. "I created you in my image, but sin separated you from me. Sin also leads to hell. But because of my love for you, I decided to take your punishment on myself."
So Joshua spent the next three hours crying and praying. No one spoke to him during this whole time.
Then on the third hour, another miracle happened. The candles were lit in a miraculous way. No one knew how it happened, but it was certainly a miracle. So they all spent the rest of the day in prayer and hymns.
In the other world, this day is known as 'The Good Friday.' The Jerusalemite people, however, call it 'Crucifixion Day.'
The next day, which was Saturday, April the fifteenth, everyone returned to the church again. Nothing unusual happened until six o'clock in the evening.
Suddenly, the whole church was covered with a very deep darkness again. Several minutes later, however, a great light had appeared in the church. It covered the whole place. It was very bright.
To everybody's amazement, a voice said, "I am the resurrection and the life. I have risen from the dead!"
The light and the voice were gone, but the light of the candles was back again. After that, the whole church was full of voices singing praises to God. They were shouting,
"Christ is risen from the dead! Truly he's risen! Hallelujah! Praise our Mighty God! Amen! He has overcome sin and death!"
The service was over. So finally, everyone left the church area and returned to their sections.
"I felt like I was in Heaven," said Joshua, feeling sad because he had left the holiest place in the building. He had many wholly things happening to him including the dream and the miracle in which he was crying to the Lord and the Lord spoke to him.
"It was the best time in my life. If I could live there, I won't want anything. Being in God's presence is more precious than anything else in this life."
"I agree," replied Emily.
The Devilists weren't at the restaurant that night, because they knew that the people would be talking about the Lord Jesus. So they were afraid to be at the restaurant while the Christians were there. The resurrection of Jesus was a great defeat for the devil, who was their leader. That's why his followers cannot listen to someone talking about it.
The Festival of the Resurrection was over now. It was Joshua's first time celebrating it. He did celebrate Easter with the Bakers, but that wasn't the true meaning of that event.