LIFE OF CHRIST

 

Matthew 21:1-9

I LOVE A PARADE

LIFE OF CHRIST #46

 

We return to our study of the life of our Lord Jesus Christ for a joyous parade.  He arrived in Bethany for His last visit to Jerusalem.  On an evening before what we call “Palm Sunday” Jesus was at a dinner where Mary of Bethany anointed Him with expensive perfume.  When Judas and other disciples showed displeasure, Jesus defended her and explained that she had done it for his burial.

 

The parade the next day involved a king and His followers, and is probably the most important parade in all of history.

The King of course is the Lord Jesus Himself. The parade occurred coming into the city of Jerusalem the very week that He was crucified. The day of the parade is called “Palm Sunday” because of the use of palms in the procession.

 

On Palm Sunday Jesus by his actions is saying to Jerusalem and the Jewish people, “I am your king, chose if you will have me!”  Jesus knew that although there was a great reception for Him on Palm Sunday, that He would be rejected and crucified.

 

THE PLAN – Vss. 1-3

 

Vs. 1 – Bethphage and Bethany were cities not far from each other or from Jerusalem.

 

Here we see our Lord putting into action a plan for the parade into Jerusalem.

This was the time to go “public”.

Israel would have the opportunity to accept or reject Jesus Christ. Of course although there were great crowds, except for the disciples, the reception was not one of true acceptance.  The leadership especially wanted nothing to do with Jesus Christ.

 

Vss. 2-3 – The plan was indeed quite simple for the two men who were sent.

They were to find an ass or a donkey and her colt. They were to loose them, and bring them to the Lord. If anyone was to question what was being done, they were to answer, “The Lord hath need of them.”  That would dispel the problem.

 

The most arresting thought that I face when I contemplate these verses is the phrase, “The Lord hath need of them.”

 

The Lord of the universe, the very son of God found a lowly jackass and her colt to be useful in his plan.

 

If the Lord can find a use for a jackass and her colt, how much more can the Lord find use for you and I?

 

Although we are not worthy, the Lord who died for us, the Lord who gives us eternal life when we believe on Him finds us to be useful in His plan.

 

Matthew 28:19-20 - We are to go to the world, preach the Gospel and teach.

 

John 13:34-35 - We are to demonstrate love.

 

Titus 3:8 - We are to do good works.

 

1 Peter 2:9-10 - God has chosen us to be the priests today that offer sacrifices of praise and intercessory prayer for others.    

 

Be ready to be used, because like these disciples, the Lord has need of you. YOU ARE PART OF HIS PLAN!

 

THE PROPHECY – Vss. 4-5

 

The Lord had the utmost respect for the Word of God.  After all, He was and is God.

 

The reason there was a parade was because God’s Word said that there would be.

 

Verses 4-5 tell us that this event is fulfillment of the words of the Old Testament prophet, Zechariah.

 

Zechariah 9:9 - Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.

 

He is just, or righteous.  He is sinless.

 

He has salvation. Jesus will come a second time with deliverance or salvation for Israel.

When He came the first time He also had salvation.

He died on the cross to save us from our sins.

 

He rode on a donkey or an ass. The horse was an animal which symbolized war. The donkey was an animal that symbolized peace. In early times in Israel, the donkey was a symbolic of kingship.

 

Jesus fulfilled this prophecy, thus saying to Israel, and to us:

“Here is your king. Receive Him!”

 “Here is your salvation. Accept it!”

He has fulfilled the prophecies.

He has purchased your salvation.

Receive Him as your Savior!

Acknowledge Him as the King of your life. Romans 10:9-10  

 

We as Christians are quick to see Jesus as Savior, but not as quick to see Him as Lord or king.

If Jesus is Savior, He is also Lord!

 

He was presented as king and king he must be in our lives.

 

Zechariah said that the King would arrive.

The King did arrive in Jerusalem that day!

Let Him be king in your life.

 

THE PARTICIPATION – Vss. 6-11   

 

Jesus would be welcomed into Jerusalem.

Each day you can welcome Jesus as a vital part of your life.

 

The ingredients of participation now are the same as they were back then.

 

Vs. 6 – The first step was OBEDIENCE.

The two disciples did as they were told.

They did not argue.

They did not gripe.

They did not complain.

 

You and I serve a loving king.

When we are called upon to obey, it is not because the king is a tyrant.

It is because the king knows best.

Let us be obedient as these disciples. John 13:13

 

John 13:13 - Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am.

 

Vss. 7-8 – The next step in participation was GIVING.   

The disciples used their clothes for Him to sit on. They provided the saddle.

Then others put their clothes along the way.

Still others placed palms, as if to say, “Welcome!”

But it was all giving.

 

To make our King feel welcome we should be willing to give:

Give of our time

Give of our services

Give of our resources

Give of our money 2 Corinthians 9:7

 

2 Corinthians 9:7 - Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.

 

The disciples not only participated with obedience and giving, but also with their PRAISE for their king.

 

Vss. 9-11 – The disciples began it, and the multitudes picked up the chant. But it was definitely praise.

 

In a king’s court

In a king’s country

The king is welcomed with pomp and with praise.

Here is the praise of the multitude shouting, “Save now! (Hosanna) which He did!

“Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord! (which He did)

“Hosanna in the highest!”

 

Although our Lord arranged for the ride, our Lord did not arrange for the outpouring of praise. God made sure that happened!

 

In fact in Luke 19:39-40 it says, And some of the Pharisees from among the multitude said unto him, Master, rebuke thy disciples. [40] And he answered and said unto them, I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out.

 

The King was worthy of the praise that He received!

He is especially worthy if you consider His Heavenly glory. Isaiah 6:1-5

 

Let me ask you a question.

If Jesus is your king, how much praise do you give Him? Hebrews 13:15, Psalm 107:1-2, Psalm 98:1

 

So there was a parade into Jerusalem on that Palm Sunday.

There were many people present.

 

THE PLAN

THE PROPHECY – The king has come!

THE PARTICIPANTS

·       They obeyed

·       They gave

·       They praised

Is Jesus your King?

Are you acting like He is your king?

 

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