• Karen O'Reilly

Holy Week Bible Plan And Timeline Of Jesus Last Week.

Updated: Apr 7

Holy Week 2022 begins on Sunday, April 10th, and ends on Saturday, April 16th. Then on Sunday, April 17th we celebrate Resurrection Sunday. Holy Week is also known as 'Passion Week'. It is a sacred time when we remember the sacrifice that Jesus made on our behalf and a time of celebration when we celebrate His resurrection. We will walk through the timeline of Holy Week and follow the final days of Jesus before His crucifixion, the events of Good Friday, and celebrate His resurrection.


So I wanted the April Bible reading plan to be full of Easter scriptures. This month’s Easter Bible reading plan includes verses about Jesus’ death and resurrection, which is the true meaning of Easter and I want to bring you alongside the disciples and the followers of Jesus as they walk through each day of the last week of Jesus' life on earth.



I love Easter! I love Christmas too but what I enjoy most about these seasons is that they make me stop in the midst of the ever-racing rollercoaster of life and intentionally consider and contemplate all that Jesus has done for me and why Jesus had to be crucified.


But most of all this Holy Week Bible plan with the timeline of Jesus last week will prepare my heart and yours for the celebration of Resurrection Sunday.


Will you join me this coming Holy Week in reading the following scriptures daily and walking alongside me as we unpack the scripture treasure inside of each Bible verse and we will discover what happened on each day of Holy Week?


  • Would you have been scared to go to Jerusalem with Jesus when you knew that the religious leaders were hostile to Jesus and were looking for an opportunity to arrest Him?

  • Would you spend a year's wages pouring out your affection on Jesus?

  • Can you learn any lessons from what Jesus was teaching the disciples during Holy Week?

  • Can you imagine Jesus washing your feet?

  • Do you think that when Jesus was arrested, you would have run away and hid as the disciples did?

  • Would you have been brave enough to stand at the foot of the cross when Jesus was placed on it?

  • If you were with the disciples at this dark time, do you think that you would have remembered that Jesus had promised that He would be raised to life in 3 days?

  • What would you have done if you came to the tomb where Jesus lay and found that He was not there but an angel was?

These are some of the questions that we will be discussing in this article and in the workbook.


Get the timeline chart of Jesus last week, prayer journal/workbook PDF.

I have everything that you need to study the timeline of Jesus last week here in this article but it is a long one to read! For your convenience, you can purchase the PDF file for only $5. It contains the full article with all the hyperlinks to the relevant bible verses at biblegateway.com so that you can quickly and easily read them on your phone, tablet, or computer. Plus there is an added workbook/prayer journal with questions to help you dig deeper as you walk the timeline of Holy Week with Jesus and His disciples. Find out more HERE.


Why did Jesus die for us?

Have you ever considered the question of why did we need Jesus to die on the cross?


Well, it goes all the way back to the Book of Genesis. Due to the fall of Adam and Eve, we are all born with a sinful nature. But Romans 5:8 says that already God loved us. You can read more about how God loves us at our darkest times and how He pours His grace over us HERE. He actually is passionately jealous for us!


"but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5:8.


Our sinful nature prevents us from being able to come into God's presence but we were all created to worship God and He is jealous for our affection and fellowship. So God sent Jesus to bridge that gap between our sinful nature and His Holiness.


Have you read our post about the name of God called, El Kanna?


El Kanna is the Hebrew name for God meaning consuming fire, jealous God. God is zealous and eager about protecting what is precious to Him which is us! This jealousy for us compels God to pursue us relentlessly, no matter how hard we may try to evade Him.


Jesus died on the cross so that His blood could pay or atone for our sin. God did all this for us because He is jealous for you and me. You can read all about the name of God, El Kanna HERE.


Keep the thought of God passionately loving you top of your mind as you study these Easter scriptures.


What happens on the days of Holy Week?

Holy Week begins on Psalm Sunday, but before we get to that significant start to the last week of Jesus' life, let's take a look at what happened on the Thursday/Friday timeline just before Psalm Sunday.


Thursday/Friday before Psalm Sunday


Keep in mind the Jewish custom of keeping the Sabbath holy. Saturday is known as the Sabbath day when there is no traveling allowed. So this event probably took place on Thursday/Friday.


We read in Mark 10:32-33 that the disciples and Jesus were walking toward Jerusalem and Jesus describes to them what would happen to Him in Jerusalem. We read previously in the Gospels of the times when the Chief Priests, Pharisees, and the Temple Guards had attempted to arrest Jesus. They wanted to kill Him. So you can imagine that the disciples were filled with terror and dread.


"And they were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was walking ahead of them. And they were amazed, and those who followed were afraid. And taking the twelve again, he began to tell them what was to happen to him,33 saying, “See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and the scribes, and they will condemn him to death and deliver him over to the Gentiles. And they will mock him and spit on him, and flog him and kill him. And after three days he will rise.”

Mark 10:32-34.


Did you notice that Jesus knew all the details of what would happen to Him in the coming days?

He knew exactly what was going to happen to Him. He knew every single gory and horrific suffering that was ahead of Him and He kept on walking toward Jerusalem.


Saturday before Psalm Sunday


Jesus and His disciples are staying in Bethany in the home of Lazarus. Jesus had raised Lazarus from the dead on a previous trip to Bethany and as a result of this miracle, the chief priests decided that Jesus had to die. Despite all the evidence that Jesus had given them, the religious leaders refused to accept that Jesus is the Son of God. Meanwhile, many people had accepted that Jesus was divine and followed Him.


They are served supper by Martha while Mary (her sister) sits at the feet of Jesus. Mary pours very expensive perfume/nard over the feet of Jesus and wipes His feet with her hair (I have just recently written all about Mary for Butterflyliving.org).


Judas, one of the disciples grew very angry. He perceived this action by Mary to be too much extravagance and that the pure nard should have been sold and the money given to the poor. Judas was actually a thief and had no intention of giving the money to the poor. Jesus reprimanded him and told Judas to leave Mary alone, that she was preparing for His coming burial.


"Six days before the Passover, Jesus therefore came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead.2 So they gave a dinner for him there. Martha served, and Lazarus was one of those reclining with him at table.3 Mary therefore took a pound of expensive ointment made from pure nard, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped his feet with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.4 But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (he who was about to betray him), said,5 “Why was this ointment not sold for three hundred denarii[b] and given to the poor?”6 He said this, not because he cared about the poor, but because he was a thief, and having charge of the moneybag he used to help himself to what was put into it.7 Jesus said, “Leave her alone, so that she may keep it for the day of my burial.8 For the poor you always have with you, but you do not always have me.” John 12:1-8 ESV.


Timeline of Jesus last week.


There is also a free sample of our Timeline of Jesus week that contains the timeline chart and all the Bible verses are hyperlinked to Biblegateway.com for your convenience and you can choose the Bible translation that you prefer to use. FREE Timeline plan HERE.


Use the following timeline of events to guide you through the events of Holy Week with Jesus. Prayerfully walk alongside Him and contemplate what it would have been like to be one of His disciples during this time. Ask the Lord to reveal more of His character as you go through each day ( you may enjoy using the devotional bible study prompts in our accompanying prayer journal/workbook).


What happened on Palm Sunday?

The Sunday before Jesus is crucified is known as Palm Sunday. Jesus sends two disciples into the town of Bethphage, at the foot of the Mount of Olives (2 miles from Jerusalem) to borrow a donkey.


Jesus instructed the men to look for a donkey tied up with her colt and to untie them. If anybody was to ask what they are doing, they were to say that the Lord needs them. This fulfills the prophecy found in Zechariah 9:9.


Crowds of people lined the streets of Jerusalem and shouted praises of 'Hossana to the Son of David' Blessed is He who came in the name of the Lord!' The crowds of people place their cloaks and palm branches all over the road as a path for Jesus to ride on.


You can read about the triumphal entry of Jesus to Jerusalem in Matthew 21:1-11, Mark 11:1-10, Luke 19:28-44, and, John 12:12-18.


Jesus chose to ride into Jerusalem on a donkey to fulfill the prophecy found in Zechariah 9:9 because in Biblical times it was common for kings to arrive by a procession on a donkey if they came in peace or on a horse as a sign of war.


When the people cried out 'Hosanna!' they were hailing Christ as King. The word, 'hosanna' actually means "save now". The people were expecting an earthly king but God had something much better planned for His Son and us. Jesus came to be our forever King, our savior. He is the One who became a substitute for our sin and to claim salvation for us all.


All we have to do is believe that Jesus is our King of kings and accept the gift of salvation! He loved us at our darkest times.


We also read in the Luke account that Jesus weeps for Jerusalem. Jesus knew that even right then the people were singing 'Hosanna', that they would soon turn against Him, betray Him and crucify Him.


"And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it,42 saying, “Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes." Luke 19:41-42.


What can we learn from Palm Sunday?

Palm Sunday reminds us that we don't need an earthly king but a divine one. God loves us more than we can ever comprehend. He passionately wants us to fellowship with Him. The only way for our sin to be conquered was for a divine man without sin to take the place of our sin. Jesus our King is the atonement for our sin.


Take time today to unreservedly worship and praise Jesus for His sacrifice for us. Because of Jesus Christ's ultimate sacrifice, we can be set free of death.



Monday of Holy Week

Jesus and the twelve disciples had gone back to Bethany the night before and now were returning to Jerusalem. Jesus was hungry and He found a fig tree. It was late spring and most fig trees haven't yet produced mature fruit. this fig tree was covered in leaves and so it caught Jesus' attention. But!....


There were no figs on it and Jesus got angry. He cursed it and the fig tree withered and died.


Why did Jesus curse the fig tree?


Israel had often been symbolized as a fig tree in scripture. eg. Isaiah 34:4.


"All the host of heaven shall rot away, and the skies roll up like a scroll. All their host shall fall, as leaves fall from the vine, like leaves falling from the fig tree."


Jesus could have been using the fig tree as a symbol of the state of hearts of many of the people in Israel. By the fig tree showing its leaves, it was like many people pretending to have fruit that was not there. The Pharisees professed to be religious and kept every law of the Torah but their lives were fruitless. They didn't even recognize Jesus as the Son of God!


"On the following day, when they came from Bethany, he was hungry.13 And seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to see if he could find anything on it. When he came to it, he found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs.14 And he said to it, “May no one ever eat fruit from you again.” And his disciples heard it."


You can read this story in Matthew 21:18-19, and Mark 11:12-14.


Jesus cleanses the temple.

Jesus went to the temple and confronted those that were intentionally making a profit off of people coming to worship there.

"And Jesus entered the temple and drove out all who sold and bought in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money-changers and the seats of those who sold pigeons.13 He said to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer,’ but you make it a den of robbers.” Matthew 21:12-13.


Jesus taught in the temple and the people that listened to Jesus hung onto every word but the Pharisees were not happy and kept looking for a time to arrest Him.


You can read more about Jesus cleansing the temple on the Monday of Holy Week in Mark 11:15-17, and Luke 19:45-46.


Tuesday of Holy Week

Disciples see the withered fig tree on the return to Jerusalem.


On Tuesday morning, Jesus and the disciples return to Jerusalem. On the way, Peter notices that the fig tree had withered and Jesus uses the opportunity to teach them about faith and prayer.


"When the disciples saw it, they marveled, saying, “How did the fig tree wither at once?”21 And Jesus answered them, “Truly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen.22 And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.” Matthew 21:20-22.


Jesus teaches parables and the religious leaders try to trap Jesus.


Jesus taught the people many parables in the temple and the chief priests did their very best to trap Jesus so that they could arrest Him. The religious leaders were very upset that Jesus was so successful in establishing himself as a spiritual authority that they were unsuccessful.


You can read about Jesus' time in the temple on the Tuesday of Holy week in Matthew 21:23-23:39, Luke 20:1-21:4, and Mark 11:27-12:44.


Mount of Olives

Later that afternoon, Jesus and the disciples left the temple and headed back to Bethany. They stopped to rest at the Mount of Olives and had a very important discussion about the coming destruction of Jerusalem and the end of the age. Jesus talked about the end times, His second coming, and the final judgment.


You can read about this discussion in Mark 13:1-37, Matthew 24:1-25:46, and Luke 21:5-36.


Holy Wednesday (sometimes called Spy Wednesday)

Judas agrees to betray Jesus.


The Bible doesn't tell us what Jesus did on Holy Wednesday. Many biblical scholars believe that Jesus rested on this day and prepared for Passover. It is also believed that Jesus and His disciples rested in Bethany, the home of Lazarus, Martha, and Mary.


However, it is thought that Judas was busy plotting against Jesus with the religious leaders and authorities to kill Him.

"Then one of the twelve, whose name was Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests15 and said, “What will you give me if I deliver him over to you?” And they paid him thirty pieces of silver.16 And from that moment he sought an opportunity to betray him." Matthew 26:14-16.


You can also read about Judas agreeing to betray Jesus in Mark 14:10-11, and Luke 22:1-6.

Judas Iscariot, a disciple of Jesus was secretly negotiating and plotting to betray his Rabbi.


How could he do this?


Did you know that Judas committed this betrayal for the measly sum of 30 pieces of silver?


At this biblical time, 30 pieces of silver were not a lot of money. In fact, it was the exact price paid to the master of a slave who was killed by an Ox (Exodus 21:32). The religious leaders were saying that they considered the cost of Jesus' death to be that of a slave.


The Last Supper.

What happened on Holy Thursday?


The Last Supper and Jesus washes the disciple's feet.

Holy Thursday is also known as Maundy Thursday. This was the last time that Jesus celebrates Passover and it is also known as the Last Supper.


Jesus washes the disciple's feet.

Jesus was staying in Bethany and He sent two of His disciples, Peter and John ahead of Him to go to an upper room in Jerusalem to prepare for the Passover feast. That evening after sunset, Jesus washed the feet of His disciples as they prepared to share in the Last Supper.


Can you imagine Jesus bending down to wash your feet?


Why did Jesus wash the disciple's feet?


There are a few reasons that Jesus displayed this act of humility.


Keep in mind that everyone wore sandals and that the roads would have been very dusty. So everybody's feet would have been dirty. It was the custom of that time for a slave to wash the feet of his master and guests.


Still, it would have been more appropriate for one of the disciples to wash the feet of Jesus. So why did Jesus perform this act?


I think that Jesus was demonstrating our need to be humble and serve one another. That certainly would make the world a better place if we all demonstrated God's love to each other in acts of service.


But......maybe there is a deeper meaning behind this action of foot washing that Jesus demonstrates.


"Jesus answered him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but afterward you will understand.”8 Peter said to him, “You shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no share with me.” John 13:7-8.


The Gospel of John is the only gospel that records this act of Jesus. Much of what Jesus said and did was not totally understood by the disciples until after His death. So Peter was focusing on the physical action of Jesus washing his feet but Jesus was demonstrating the spiritual washing that we all need, to be washed in the blood of our sacrificial Lamb, Jesus.


The Last Supper



The last supper free timeline of jesus last week

"And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”20 And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood.21 But behold, the hand of him who betrays me is with me on the table.22 For the Son of Man goes as it has been determined, but woe to that man by whom he is betrayed!”23 And they began to question one another, which of them it could be who was going to do this. Luke 22:19-23 ESV.


This was the last supper that Jesus would share with the disciples. In fact, Jesus was about to be betrayed by Judas.


I wonder what the disciples thought about the words that Jesus spoke as He blessed this Passover meal?


They probably hadn't comprehended what Jesus meant about His body being the bread and His blood being the wine. And then hearing that there was a man sitting at the table, breaking bread with them, would betray Jesus. It must have been quite an emotional time!


This is why every Christian church in the world regularly celebrates Holy Communion. It is so important to remember the words of Jesus at the Last Supper and to remind ourselves that we are sinners saved by the gracious blood that Jesus shed on the cross.


It is time for the bitter act of the betrayal of Jesus to unfold. Judas Iscariot slips out from the Last Supper and acts out his role in the betrayal of Jesus.


You can read all about the events of Holy Thursday in Matthew 26:17-35, Mark 14:12-25,

Luke 22:7-23, and John 13:1-30.


Good Friday timeline


Good Friday was the last day of Jesus' life. I find it difficult to comprehend how so much could have taken place in just one day of Jesus' life. Take time today to prayerfully pause as you follow the timeline of events. You will find below a list of approximate times of the major events as they occurred, leading up to the crucifixion.


12 AM Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane


Good Friday timeline 12 am garden of gethsemane

After eating the Passover supper, the disciples accompanied Jesus to the Garden at Gethsemane. This occurred approximately at 12AM.

We are told in scripture that Jesus prayed in agony.


"And he came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him.40 And when he came to the place, he said to them, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.”41 And he withdrew from them about a stone's throw, and knelt down and prayed,42 saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.”43 And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him.44 And being in agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.45 And when he rose from prayer, he came to the disciples and found them sleeping for sorrow,46 and he said to them, “Why are you sleeping? Rise and pray that you may not enter into temptation.” Luke 22:39-46 ESV.


You can read about this the time Jesus spent praying in the Garden at Gethsemane in


Judas betrays Jesus with a kiss


It wasn't long before Judas arrived to betray Jesus with a kiss:


"While he was still speaking, Judas came, one of the twelve, and with him a great crowd with swords and clubs, from the chief priests and the elders of the people.48 Now the betrayer had given them a sign, saying, “The one I will kiss is the man; seize him.”49 And he came up to Jesus at once and said, “Greetings, Rabbi!” And he kissed him. Matthew 26:47-49 ESV.


You can read the gospel accounts of this brutal betrayal in

 

3 AM Jesus was falsely put on trial.


Good Friday timeline 3am jesus put on trial

Jesus has now been arrested and has been put falsely on trial. Judas has been overcome with remorse and has killed himself. The disciples have scattered and Peter has denied knowing Jesus 3 times!


You can read about these events in









6 AM Mocked and crowned 'King of the Jews'.


Good Friday timeline 6am

Jesus is brought before Pilate and then Herod. He is then brought before Pilate again.


"Now Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus said, “You have said so.”12 But when he was accused by the chief priests and elders, he gave no answer.13 Then Pilate said to him, “Do you not hear how many things they testify against you?”14 But he gave him no answer, not even to a single charge, so that the governor was greatly amazed." Matthew 27:11-14.


Jesus was condemned, beaten, and mocked. The Roman soldiers stripped Jesus and put a purple robe on Him and made Him a crown of thorns. They did this to mock Him, that He should think that He is a king!


If they only knew the truth of Who Jesus is. The Roman soldiers called Jesus 'The King of The Jews' but we know that Jesus is truly Basileus Basileon-The King Of Kings.


You can read this part of Good Friday's timeline in


9 AM Jesus is crucified.


Good Friday timeline 9 am Jesus is crucified

Jesus had to carry His own cross, with Simon of Cyrene’s help, to Golgotha.

During this time, any persons condemned to be crucified were made to carry the crossbeam to the place of crucifixion.


Jesus started to carry it but He simply could not carry it far after all the physical trauma he had suffered.


He had sweated blood when He had prayed in the Garden at Gethsemane, been whipped and beaten, and then He was made to wear a crown of thorns.


Jesus was crucified at 9 AM. We know this to be true because Mark 15:25 ESV says,

"And it was the third hour when they crucified him." For the Jewish people, the first hour of the day was 6 AM.

The soldiers divide Jesus’s clothing and He prays for them. But still, the soldiers and chief priests mock Jesus.


"So also the chief priests, with the scribes and elders, mocked him, saying,42 “He saved others; he cannot save himself. He is the King of Israel; let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him.43 He trusts in God; let God deliver him now, if he desires him. For he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’” Matthew 27:41-43.


Jesus speaks from the cross to the thieves on either side. The repentant thief asks Jesus to remember him, and this is what Jesus says,


"And he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”43 And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise.” Luke 23:42-43.


Then Jesus speaks to John and asks him to take care of His mother,


"When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son!”27 Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home." John 19:26-27.


This exchange between Jesus on the cross, His mother, and John always catches my breath. Even in the last few hours of Jesus' life, He still cares for others. I wonder often how Mary must have been feeling to see her son die on the cross.


You can read what the Gospels have to say about Jesus being crucified here: