Summary: Examining the lessons we can learn from the day Jesus enters His city, Jerusalem.
Jesus Goes To Jerusalem
Jesus’ road to Calvary was deliberately foreordained. Paul tells us Jesus arrived on schedule to complete His mission as planned on planet earth. "But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons." (Gal. 4:4-5)
Peter confirms that God’s incarnation into the flesh of man, His ministry and His passion were all part of the Godhead’s pre-foundational preordained plan. "And it shall come to pass, [that] whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved. Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know: Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:" (Acts 2:21-23)
Jesus Himself confirms on more than one occasion that His life, ministry, death on the cross and resurrection from the grave were not historical aberrations or accidents. "As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep, And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, [and] one shepherd. Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again." (John 10:15-17)
The cross was no surprise to Jesus. Neither were any of the events leading up to it; including His triumphant entry into His City, Jerusalem, the City of peace and the place of the throne of David.
Our Savior was omniscient. Nothing was hidden from Him. He had known from eternity past every crook and turn of the path He would tread to Calvary. As He prepares to enter into His City for the last week He will spend upon earth before His crucifixion, He is fully aware of all the momentous events that will mark the days ahead. All of it would be the working out on earth of the drama of redemption the Godhead had set into play in the eons of the ages.
But it had clearly been part of this eternal plan that the day of the cross would be hidden for awhile. The commission given to the twelve and then the seventy was to announce in the towns and villages the good news of the King’s coming. They were to herald the presence of the Messiah King in Israel. They were to first give God’s chosen people the privilege of recognizing and receiving their long awaited King. That’s what all the miracles, signs and wonders of His ministry had been basically about until this time. "This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him." (John 2:11) These were designed and performed primarily to confirm and authenticate His identity and His ministry to unbelieving Jews in an unbelieving Jewish nation.
In a few days they will decisively and ultimately reject their personal and national Savior and add insult to injury by cruelly crucifying Him on an ignoble Roman cross. But first He must make this final presentation of Himself as their Messiah and King. He must do it at a time of great national and religious significance and in Jerusalem: the city to which all observing Jews were obligated to go to celebrate Passover and the other feasts of the law. The national cry was always, "This year Jerusalem!"
His entry into His City is the beginning of that last week of His earthly ministry; the week of His passion. These six days before His resurrection will be marked by many momentous events. He will purge the temple of God. He will preach His last sermon of warning to the Jews and Jerusalem. In the Upper Room, He will teach His give lessons of comfort, humility and love to his disciples. He will institute His Supper. He will agonize in the Garden of Gethsemane. He will be betrayed by Judas and denied by Peter. He will be tried before both Herod and Pilate. He will be scorned, scourged and brutally beaten. He will be cruelly crucified for you and me. The stone will be rolled away and He will rise triumphantly from the grave.
THE PREPARATION FOR HIS PRESENTATION TO ISRAEL is simple but significant. He procures a proper mount appropriate for His humble entry into His City. The details of His action confirm His perfect knowledge of all things. It begins by the Mt. of Olives. This is the place He will retire to after celebrating the Passover with His disciples and instituting His Supper. He sends two of His disciples into the nearby village of Bethpage. They return with the proper mount miraculously prepared and procured for His presentation to the people of God. He rides down the side of the Mt. of Olives, through the Garden of Gethsemane and enters His City through the Golden or Eastern Gate. He will take the same route and enter the same Gate when He comes as the conquering King of Kings and Lord of Lords at the beginning of His Millineal Kingdom. (See Zech. 14:1-9, Rev. 19:11-15)