Based on Biblical Text: Psalm 118:26a KJV
Blessed be he that cometh in the name of the Lord
Palm Sunday just may be the most ignored among the main events in Jesus’ life. However, if Palm Sunday has something to say about the history of our faith, and has anything to do with the greatest act of obedience and worship in the life of our faith then it deserves our attention. If Palm Sunday has something to do with the great revival that we are praying to be a part of, has something to do with Jesus’ greater glory and is about the praise and prayer that eventually served to transform entire cities then it certainly deserves our attention.
Palm Sunday is about Jesus! It represents the beginning of a long week of changing emotions. Palm Sunday is about the most incredible highs and the most devastating lows. Because of Jesus our hope has an anchor, is grounded in truth and is rooted in righteousness. What happened on Palm Sunday was arguably the most public hour of Jesus’ life.
Palm Sunday is important as the events are recorded in all four gospels. The Christmas story is found in only two of the gospels. The donkey ride by itself is enough to show us that it was intended for, and even planned by Jesus Himself. Jesus sent two of His disciples into the village and instructed them to find the donkey and the colt, turn them loose and “bring them to me.” Jesus said if anybody asks you anything tell them the Lord needs them.
Palm Sunday was a day of great joy, and yet we find Jesus openly weeping. It was a time of great reception, of great favor, and yet Jesus ends the day with an angry outburst clearing out the Temple. “It is written, My house shall be called a house of prayer, but you have made it a den of thieves.” This recorded act of violence moved Jesus’ enemies to form an alliance against him.
Jesus knew very well that the praise was directed toward him and that the people recognized him as God’s chosen Messiah. However, the Palm Sunday celebration clearly indicated that Jesus’ followers really didn’t understand the enormous significance of the event. The Bible says “These things His disciples did not understand at the first; but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things were written of Him, and that they had done these things to Him” (John 12:16). This verse reminds us that Palm Sunday was a time when things had been done to Jesus.
We think we know Jesus when we can explain what He came to do for us. However, Palm Sunday sometimes gets lost because a closer look reminds us that it is not about us, it is about Jesus. On Palm Sunday something wonderful took place for Jesus.
Jesus was fulfilling prophecy. The Bible talks about the Coming King. “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, Lowly and riding on a donkey, A colt, the foal of a donkey.” As Jesus enters Jerusalem the crowd shouted and sang from Psalm 118 Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!
The truth of the matter is Jesus was doing more than fulfilling prophecy. On Palm Sunday Jesus was prophesying. He combined the truths and imagery of the prophecy in Zechariah 9, other scriptures and what had been written hundreds of years before Palm Sunday to let folk know He was this majestic king that the leaders talked about. He wanted the people to know that He was the king that the leaders would turn on and convince them to have killed.
“Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord.” The crowd shouted their recognition that God had given them a messiah. This crowd was not trying to force him to be king, or elect him as king by a voice vote. Jesus had seen that kind of mob before (John 6:15) and had disappeared almost instantly. This was not a king-making crowd. This crowd recognized that Jesus came to them “in the name of the Lord.”
Palm Sunday is a day for Jesus. Jesus is looking toward the day when God would redeem us from evil. Jesus is looking forward to the day that churches, families, and entire cities would be transformed so that the promised kingdom of God on earth would be a reality.
God transforms us through a leader. Jesus is that leader. Jesus took the abuse and endured the cruelty that we might be transformed. Jesus was wounded for our transgressions and bruised for our iniquities. Jesus’ work beginning on Palm Sunday transforms us. On that Palm Sunday when Jesus triumphantly rode into Jerusalem there was no longer any doubt as to who the leader would be. The questions that day and the questions today are, will God’s people know Him and will they recognized Him? Will God’s people welcome their Messiah?
On this Palm Sunday will our hearts be open to welcome the king of glory, “That the King of glory may come in!” “Who is this King of glory?”, “The Lord strong and mighty.” “Who is this King of glory?,” The Lord mighty in battle. The Lord of hosts, He is the King of glory.”