Sermon Illustrations

Shouts of Praise

There is a loud declaration of our Lord's purpose for coming to earth at the triumphal entry. "As Jesus approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage and Bethany at the Mount of Olives... Many people spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread branches they had cut in the fields. Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted, 'Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!... Hosanna in the highest!'" (Mark 11: 1, 8 - 10)

What was our Lord's mission as He made His way into the holy city? What should be in the hearts and coming out of the mouths of God's chosen people during this Easter season?

By the time Jesus had made this approach to Jerusalem, He had been traveling around three years performing miracles, teaching and ministering to all who would just come to Him. On this trip into Jerusalem, He would be wrongfully treated, brutally beaten and experience the sting of death of which no Christian will ever bear.

Just a few days earlier Jesus declared His mission, "For the Son of Man came to seek and save what was lost." (Luke 19:10) The word "Hosanna" means "save us." At that time, "Hosanna" had become a common shout of the Jewish people for the praises of God.

Jesus' purpose for going to Jerusalem at that time in history was to give His life, to allow His blood to be shed, He became the Paschal Lamb of God. He died to pay for the sins of the world. Think upon that; Jesus knew as He entered Jerusalem, that before the week came to an end, those shouts of "Hosanna" would turn to "Crucify Him!" His death and resurrection makes the way for repentant sinners to be forgiven and receive a fresh clean start before God. Jesus' mission was completed on the Cross of Calvary.

Peter reminds Christians of their mission, they "...are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that [they] may declare the praises of Him who called [them] out of darkness into His wonderful light." (1 Peter 2:9)

How can Christians proclaim the praises of God? First, we should make a joyful proclamation of who Jesus is. The crowd on the road to Jerusalem had no concern for what the Pharisees or the Roman soldiers thought about their praises....

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