Summary: A Study Of Palm Sunday
This sermon was developed for the Army Community. It contains phraseology that may not be understood by the general civilian population.
Our culture says it is wrong for us to ask for help when we need it. In fact asking for help is a sign of weakness a sign or of incompetence. This is particularly true for men. Women let me ask you this question, how often have you ridden with a man who is clearly lost and refuses to ask for directions? The man, be it your husband, boy friend, father or whoever desperately needs help find his way back to the right road, but simply refuses to ask and is insulted because you have suggested asking for help. Now I don’t need to see hands, but I am sure the majority of you here have had that experience.
The truth is we all have problems to deal with but what do we do instead of looking for help we needed it? I posed the question of “how do you deal with your worse problems” to several of my soldiers out in my motor pool last week. Listen to some of their responses. [PLAY CD] In each of the responses the soldiers tried to rely on their own experience and judgment. Exactly what our culture says they are suppose to do. Which is some circumstances I suppose is not necessarily wrong, but it’s the John Wayne mentality. If you are going to be a rugged individualist you never ever ask for help. Only sissies and weaklings do that. Once again, however, we all need a little help from time to time.
Today is Palm Sunday, a significant day on the church calendar to say the least. Today is the day that we celebrate Jesus’ triumphal entry in to Jerusalem. Today we will be looking we will be looking at the story of Palm Sunday and the story of Jesus’ arrest in the garden. You can follow along with me in your Bibles if you like. I will be reading from Luke chapter 19 starting at verse 29.
As they (Jesus and the disciples) came to the towns of Bethphage and Bethany, on the Mount of Olives, he (Jesus) sent two disciples ahead, with instructions to go to the next village, and as they entered they were to look for a donkey tied beside the road. It would be a colt (that is a young donkey), not yet broken for riding.
"Untie him," Jesus said, "and bring him here. And if anyone asks you what you are doing, just say, `The Lord needs him.’"
They found the colt as Jesus said, and sure enough, as they were untying it, the owners demanded an explanation.
"What are you doing?" they asked. "Why are you untying our colt?" I don’t know if crime was a problem in that town or not, but the owners of the colt probably had the same kinds of feelings if you saw someone trying to get into your car and drive away.
And the disciples simply replied, "The Lord needs him!" So they brought the colt to Jesus and threw some of their clothing across its back for Jesus to sit on.
Then the crowds spread out their robes and palm branches along the road ahead of him, and as they reached the place where the road started down from the Mount of Olives, the whole procession began to shout and sing as they walked along, praising God for all the wonderful miracles Jesus had done.
"God has given us a King!" they exulted. "Long live the King! Let all heaven rejoice! Glory to God in the highest heavens!"
It was prophesied in the Old Testament that the Messiah, the individual who would deliver the Jews from oppression, would ride into Jerusalem on a colt and the Jewish people apparently though that Jesus would somehow get rid of the Roman forces that occupied Jerusalem. The Jewish people saw Jesus as an earthly king.
This was Jesus’ first problem he encountered on when he entered into Jerusalem. Jesus did not come to give the Jewish people freedom from the Romans, but rather to give them spiritual freedom from legalistic traditions. For example it was considered wrong under Jewish tradition for a person to wear false eyelashes or false teeth on the Sabbath, because that would be work, unless the eyelashes or teeth per put in before the Sabbath started. Likewise a person observing Jewish traditions could refuse to take care of his or her parents when they were old (which according to Jewish tradition children were suppose to) if they give all of their property to the sacred service of God.
You see the Jewish people did not understand that Jesus came to set them free from being a slaves to traditions (and not all of them are bad. I kinda like that one where children take care of their parents when they are old), but from traditions that kept them from having a relationship with God. So in essence