WHEN THE KING RIDES IN…
Blessed are You, my King, who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest! (38).
Read Luke 19:28–44
Jesus Comes to Jerusalem as King
28 After Jesus had said this, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. 29 As he approached Bethphage and Bethany at the hill called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples, saying to them, 30 “Go to the village ahead of you, and as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, which no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here. 31 If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ say, ‘The Lord needs it.’”
32 Those who were sent ahead went and found it just as he had told them. 33 As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, “Why are you untying the colt?”
34 They replied, “The Lord needs it.”
35 They brought it to Jesus, threw their cloaks on the colt and put Jesus on it. 36 As he went along, people spread their cloaks on the road.
37 When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen:
38 “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!”[a]
“Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”
39 Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples!”
40 “I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.”
41 As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it 42 and said, “If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes. 43 The days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment against you and encircle you and hem you in on every side. 44 They will dash you to the ground, you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God’s coming to you.”
a Luke 19:38 Psalm 118:26
New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectThe dark hair running down and across a donkey’s back makes a cross. Picture that as you shoulder your own cross for Jesus.
Given that Jerusalem is the scene of mounting tension and opposition to Jesus, his choice to enter the city amid thousands of Passover pilgrims is significant – and hardly the action of a marked man.
The people would no doubt prefer that Jesus sat astride an impressive warhorse rather than a donkey. But in this choice Jesus not only fulfills a key prophecy spoken 500 years before (Zechariah 9:9); he signals that he is not the next national leader but a Savior from sin.
Despite the lack of a warhorse, the people yell enthusiastically as if greeting a military hero, waving palms – symbolic of victory and peace. From our side of events we see this is no happy street parade – rather a ride to certain death. Only Jesus knows the truth and it makes him weep (41–44).
One day Jesus will take center stage astride a horse and we can truly praise him as King of kings: “I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war” (Revelation 19:11).
The people remove outer clothing (35) to welcome Jesus. What might you need to remove in your life to come to Him today, however vulnerable that leaves you?
Jesus, I come humbly before You now. I lay all I am at Your feet. Save me. Hosanna.
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