The Plan, The Preparation and The Praise

Today is Palm Sunday, the beginning of “Holy Week” that culminates on Easter Sunday. I conducted the chapel service at Mackenzie Place and then had my final meeting with my campaign team to wrap up and reflect on the past 12 weeks. I take the oath of office on Tuesday night to begin my City Council service.

BIBLE VERSE FOR TODAY….  “Go into the village in front of you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, you shall say, ‘The Lord needs them,’ and he will send them at once.”  Matthew 21:2-3 ESV

As Jesus rides into Jerusalem, it was not by accident. This was “the” entrance, “the” time of His arrival in the Capital city of God’s people. Jesus did not make His “headquarters” in Jerusalem. He ministered in remote places, much like his predecessor John the Baptist.

On one occasion Jesus told His disciples,  And taking the twelve, he said to them, “See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written about the Son of Man by the prophets will be accomplished.” (Luke 18:31 ESV)

The first fulfillment of the prophet is how the Messiah would arrive. The prophet Zachariah is quoted by Matthew.

“Say to the daughter of Zion, ‘Behold, your king is coming to you, humble, and mounted on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a beast of burden.’” (Matthew 21:5 ESV)

God in His sovereign plan even prepared the particular donkey that Jesus would ride. We don’t know who the owner was, but when he would be told the “master needed” his animals that he would willingly send them. Jesus began the week with a borrowed donkey and would end the week in a borrowed tomb.

Then we see the crowds prepare. They cut down palm branches, they take off their coats and spread them on the ground in honor of Jesus. The excitement is high and there is excitement in the air.

“Most of the crowd spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. And the crowds that went before him and that followed him were shouting,“Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” (Matthew 21:8-9 ESV)

This is the ancient “ticker tape” parade. The crowd is declaring praise and expressing their hope in what Jesus had done and who He was. It is difficult to comprehend the turn of events that would transpire by the end of week.

But in this moment, at this time, Jesus “the Son of David” is entering the City of David and the people are welcoming and worshiping the King who is coming.

When I reflect on the Triumphal entry, I often think of these words in Psalm 24:

“Lift up your heads, you gates; lift them up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. Who is he, this King of glory? The Lord Almighty—he is the King of glory.” (Psalm 24:9-10 ESV)

Jesus is worthy of praise, He is the King of glory! He is the Savior, He is our hope.

Prayer for today…. Lord, we praise You for who You are. We can see now that those in times past were not able to comprehend. You are the Lord, who is our Savior and You did come to Jerusalem to save Your people; not from political tyranny, but from slavery to sin, and granting eternal life.