1. During the first days of the week in which He suffered, our blessed Lord had been teaching all day in the Temple. The assembled crowd had cried, “Hosanna to the son of David: Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord.” It seemed as if He were going to be acknowledged by the voice of the people as the King of Israel. How deceptive are appearances! How often, when all seems going well and the cause of Christ about to triumph, some grievous disappointment is at hand!
2. Side by side with the enthusiasm of the people grew the rage and fury of the chief priests and scribes. Why did they thus hate Him Who went about doing good? In their selfishness and cupidity they feared lest He should interfere with their influence and they thus lose their position, their reputation, their gains. Pride and self-love blinded their eyes, and made them hate with a bitter hatred the Son of God. Am I not sometimes blinded by like feelings? filled with unjust dislike of others because they seem to interfere with my influence or my personal interests?
3. The chief priests had a great advantage in the fact that in the little company that surrounded Jesus there was a traitor. Judas, impelled by avarice, had been first a thief, and then had made overtures to betray his Master. O fatal love of money, to harden the heart of man! How careful must I be not to set my heart on any earthly possessions, since nothing has a more deadly power than this to separate me from the love of Jesus!
Source: Clarke, R. F. (1889). The Sacred Passion of Jesus Christ: Short Meditations for Every Day in Lent (p. 8). Benziger Brothers.