Guess Who’s Come to Town?
King Jesus, loose the Hosannas that stick in my sophisticated throat. I want to joyfully praise Your holy name.
Read Mark 11:1-11
Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION
“God is the King of all the earth; sing to him a psalm of praise” (Psa. 47:7). Celebrate your King today.
Most cultures throughout history have celebrated special events involving important people with some kind of ritual or pageantry. High-level state visitors are escorted by a cavalcade of impressive vehicles. Successful film stars and pop musicians are thronged by adoring fans, and some are feted with “keys of the city” or stars in the pavement. The trappings change with time and place, but such celebrations usually involve careful preparation.
Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem seems to break all the rules of royal welcomes. He organized his own transport. His welcoming procession was spontaneous, not premeditated (except by himself). He was a divisive figure who might have been wiser to keep away from the city altogether, rather than make an unusual spectacle of his arrival. He did not look like a king–just a well known teacher riding into town. His transport was a lowly donkey; his entourage was a crowd of common people; and the lasting symbol of his visit was a wooden cross.
Why did Jesus choose to enter the city as he did? First, his humble entry was consistent with his kingly mission to bring peace (Isa. 9:6,7, 52:7; 53:5; Zech. 9:9,10)–a mission not understood by his disciples and the crowds, who were still expecting their Messiah to be a conquering hero. Second, he was at last publicly announcing his true identity, fulfilling several Old Testament prophecies concerning the Messiah, the ruler from the line of Judah (Gen. 49:10,11a) and the gentle King arriving on a donkey (Zech. 9:9). The out-of-town crowd who followed him into the city partially recognized this as they shouted hosannas, their chant coming from a Messianic psalm (Psa. 118:25-27). As they waved palm branches in acclamation, they foreshadowed a greater day of celebration to come around God’s throne (Rev. 7:9,10).
Reflect on the word “hosanna” (save now!) and what God’s saving action in Christ has meant in your life’s journey.
Lord, You alone are worthy of my praise and devotion. Help me to live humbly and obediently for You.