Summary: God’s use of David reminds us of the way He is preparing to use us today to accomplish His purposes on earth and in heaven
Brenda Fossum, Duluth, MN says, On Palm Sunday, my 5-year-old niece, Stephanie, sat on my lap while we listened to the pastor’s sermon. He described Jesus’ approach to Jerusalem and how the crowds cried, "Hosanna, Hosanna!" At that, Stephanie perked up and began to sing, "Oh, Hosanna, now don’t you cry for me!"
Just to set it straight, it’s “Hosanna” and it comes from a Hebrew word that means “save!” This morning is Palm Sunday, and Hosanna is one of those words that it’s good for us to understand rather than ignore. And the person we’re going to be looking at this morning is one we need to understand too. To get to him, I want you to consider some other familiar passages alongside our text this morning.
But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.
About 1,000 yrs. before that night, in Bethlehem, Samuel the prophet came to the house of Jesse, sent by God to anoint the person who would become the next king of Israel. Jesse brought in his 7 oldest sons, and God said none of them were the one He had chosen.
So he asked Jesse, "Are these all the sons you have?" "There is still the youngest," Jesse answered, "but he is tending the sheep." Samuel said, "Send for him; we will not sit down until he arrives."
It was David. Samuel anointed him with oil and left.
Meanwhile, back in about AD 29, Jesus is approaching the climax of His earthly ministry.
As the time approached for him to be taken up to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem.
About 1000 yrs before, a young shepherd boy named David was the only one among the armies of Israel who was brave enough to confront the giant Goliath. Goliath fell dead. It was the start of a warrior’s career, and the end of one giant’s career.
While, back in AD 29, Jesus’ friend Lazarus falls ill. Jesus is late in getting to him, and Lazarus has been dead 4 days by the time Jesus arrives at the home in Bethany. Jesus calls Lazarus out of the grave alive in front of many witnesses. It amazes many, and angers Jesus’ enemies.
About 1000 yrs before, David was no longer in the good graces of King Saul. Saul was jealous of him, and even set out to hunt him down and kill him. David did a lot of running from Saul in those days, but God took care of him. Eventually, Saul was killed in battle.
Back in AD 29, Jesus is staying at Bethany 6 days before the Passover Feast. He sets out for Jerusalem, and sends ahead a couple of His followers:
As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, "Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, tell him that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away." This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet: "Say to the Daughter of Zion, ’See, your king comes to you, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’"
About 1000 yrs before that, David was established as a warrior and king. Among the many cities he conquered was a city of the Jebusites called Jerusalem.
David then took up residence in the fortress and called it the City of David.
Just east of that city, in AD 29, Jesus came riding in on the foal of a donkey. People followed behind Him, and others came out when they heard He was arriving. It was a kind of spontaneous parade. People placed their cloaks in the road, or cut down palm branches and laid them along the parade route. We usually call it the “Triumphal Entry.” We tend to ignore what Lk records – that as Jesus was riding into Jerusalem, He was crying over the city. God had predicted through Zech.
Zechariah 9:9 (HCSB) Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion! Shout in triumph, Daughter Jerusalem! See, your King is coming to you; He is righteous and victorious, humble and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
The only thing that approaches the profoundness of God in the flesh, lying in a manger as a helpless baby, is King Jesus, entering the Holy City to complete His great mission, seated on a donkey, apparently led by its mother.