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The Entry of Christ Into Jerusalem

IconThe entry of Christ into Jerusalem” reflects a celebration of triumph.

This is the way the Gospel presents the event. Our Church brings us to this moment of glory. Coming at the close of Great Lent, the celebration of the Feast gives a foretaste of Paschal Joy.

According to the Gospel of St. John (12: 1-18) the public celebration which accompanied the Entry into Jerusalem was not only on account of Jesus, but also to see Lazarus whom He had raised from the dead. The people took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him. Jesus found a young donkey and sat upon it. The Disciples followed Him and the welcoming crowd met them at the Jerusalem Gate. In the icon, our focus of attention is on the portrait of Christ, seated sideways on the donkey, His head turned toward the Disciples following Him, and His right hand raised in blessing. All of that we can see on the icon.

Traditionally, children play a prominent role in the representation of the Entry of Christ Into Jerusalem unlike on the Icon. Some are depicted: one, high in a tree, cutting the palm branches; another, spreading his cloak along Christ's way. Though the Gospels do not specify the children’s presence, the Church sees in them the very embodiment of the Biblical reference: "Out of the mouths of babes and suckling’s you have fashioned praise." (Psalm 8: 3) Related to this is the call of the Palm Sunday Vespers: "Wherefore, like babes, rejoice, carrying branches in your hands, and praise Him, singing, 'Ho sanna in the highest. Blessed is He Who comes, the King of Israel.' "

The Icon of the Entry of Christ Into Jerusalem portrays the journey of Christ to His voluntary passion and death. At the same time, it gives us an image of His installation in the Kingdom of His glory, the Kingdom of the New Jerusalem, which in terms of the Resurrection Matins, shines in the glory of the Lord.

Praying to God with Icon “The entry of Christ into Jerusalem” we use next TROPARION:

O Christ God, You confirmed the resurrection of all before the time of Your passion by raising Lazarus from the dead. Therefore, we as the children of Israel carry the symbols of victory and cry out to You, the Conqueror of Death, "Hosanna in the highest! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord."