Spiritual Discipline

Palm Sunday Celebration

This day and the six days that follow, is preparation for the single day when more people go to church than any other day of the year, even Christmas Day. Just like 2000 years ago when Jesus made his way into the city of Jerusalem on the small donkey. They are still coming by the thousands to celebrate Him and not wanting to miss any form of blessing in the material world we live. It is one week before Easter. Try to imagine Jesus coming into Jerusalem, and as it states in John 12:19 when the Pharisees say to one another, "....Look how the whole world has gone after Him." Even the enemies of Jesus saw Him conquering the world.

Can you imagine thousands upon thousands lining the roadway between Bethany and Jerusalem crying for their Savior? What a picture of how the world should be crying for the Lord's deliverance today. On this Easter week of celebrating our King Jesus, let's pray the world will turn to Jesus as their Savior.

John 12:12-19 tells us that Jesus was at the home of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. Mary had anointed Jesus' feet with expensive perfume. It was six days before the Passover celebration. The crowds were gathering for the Passover. Josephus, who was a noted Jewish historian of that day, estimated over 2 million people were involved in the Passover Feast. Over 256,000 lambs were slain at one Passover, each representing ten people.

In Verse 13, we see the false concept of seeing Jesus as an earthly Savior, One who is to bring utopia to earth for the people of God. This concept sees Jesus as the Conqueror, the Provider, and the false concept of understanding the Messiahship of Jesus. He was reaching out to a world that is lost and they did not see the demand of Christ for self-denial, giving Himself as the One to meet the needs of the world. Nor did they understand the spiritual concern of Christ to bring peace between man and God, and with man living a holy, righteous, and pure life in order to be acceptable to God.

The people took palm branches to wave and lay before Him. They cried "Hosanna," which means, "Save Now, or "Save, We Pray". The people shouting thought of Jesus as an earthly conqueror, and were doing so under false concept that if Jesus did what they expected Him to do, they could move about and do as they pleased with no Roman restrictions. They saw Jesus as the political King and Messiah, a false concept of Christ which is still happening today. People still have a false concept of Christ which sees Him as the One who gives us material blessings. People fail to understand they must come to Jesus because they love Him, not because they can get something out of Him. They must come because of who He is, not because of material blessings.

In Verses 14-15, we see the true concept of Christ. By riding a colt (small donkey), it symbolized how King Jesus was riding a beast of service to carry the burdens of men. Colts were used by Kings and their emissaries, and when they rode them into the city, it symbolized their peaceful intentions. Of course, this was quite different from a conquering King. When a King entered a city as a conqueror, he rode a stallion. Jesus demonstrated two things: He was unquestionably the promised King, the Savior of the people, and He was not coming as the conquering King.

In Verse 16, we see how the disciples didn't grasp the meaning and significance of what was happening. They misunderstood Jesus' Messiahship and Kingship. They, at this point, still thought Jesus was to be a worldly King and earthly Messiah. So the disciples were as guilty as the people in misunderstanding Scripture. He didn't come to fulfill the lustful craving and worldly ambitions of men. He came that we might be saved and surrender our lives to Him as Lord. Verses 17-18 share how many people were sincere and put their faith in Jesus. But many were simply sightseers who came for the excitement, the sensational, the spectacular.

Glorious King, we celebrate you as our Redeemer, Savior, and Master. Thank You for bearing the sins of the world and for paying the price for our souls to spend eternity with You. I surrender my life to You today, and everyday, that I live on this earth. You are the worthy "Lamb That Was Slain", and I pray the world will know You as their Savior. Help me to tell others who You are: the Messiah and the gift from God the Father. I pray they give their heart and life to You, and receive You as Lord. In Jesus name I pray, Amen! YES or NO

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