Summary: A sermon for Palm Sunday
21:1* ¶ And when they drew near to Jerusalem and came to Bethphage, to the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples,
2* saying to them, “Go into the village opposite you, and immediately you will find an ass tied, and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to me.
3* If any one says anything to you, you shall say, ‘The Lord has need of them,’ and he will send them immediately.”
4* This took place to fulfil what was spoken by the prophet, saying,
5* “Tell the daughter of Zion, Behold, your king is coming to you, humble, and mounted on an ass, and on a colt, the foal of an ass.”
6 The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them;
7* they brought the ass and the colt, and put their garments on them, and he sat thereon.
8* Most of the crowd spread their garments on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road.
9* And the crowds that went before him and that followed him shouted, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!”
10* And when he entered Jerusalem, all the city was stirred, saying, “Who is this?”
11* And the crowds said, “This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth of Galilee.”RSV
Grace and peace to you from our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. Amen
There was once a cowboy who listened attentively to the story of the first Palm Sunday. After hearing it, . . . he had only one small response to make to the story. In his own straight forward way, . . . the cowboy simply stated, . . . Jesus must have had wonderful hands. But his words only confused the others around him. Out of curiously they asked, . . . What do you mean by that statement? Well, the cowboy replied, . . . if Jesus could sit on a colt . . . on which no person ever sat, . . . an untried, . . . unbroken animal; . . . if he could soothe it . . . and control it . . . and guide it . . . while people were shrieking hosannas in its ears, . . . waving the branches of palm trees in front of its eyes, . . . and throwing down clothes in front of its feet, . . . Jesus must have had wonderful hands!
The hands of Christ are indeed wonderful hands. Those hand reached out to people from every walk of life. Those hands touched the sick and dying, raised the dead, feed a hungry throng of people. Those hand of Jesus calmed the wind, were folded in prayer as he prayed to the father for the strength to carry on his mission. Those hands of Christ are hands that now reach across the span of time and touches our lives through his Holy Spirit.
The hands of Christ are indeed wonderful hands. Those hands allowed Christ to ride on a colt into Jerusalem on what we now call Palm Sunday. Those hand held the reins of that animal so that it would not be frighten with all the shouting and throwing of palm branches on the ground as Jesus rode as a king into the city.
Those hands of Jesus calmed the animal as he calmed the sea. Jesus rode into the city as one who would be king and those hands waved to the crowds that he understood what his mission was. He knew that this ride was going to end with his death. But Jesus held on to the reins for he knew he must follow through with the will of His father.
Those hands of Jesus in a few days would be clutched in prayer and he prayed in the garden for the strength to follow through with the will of the father. Those hands were clutched so tight in prayer and sweat and beads of blood came from the body of Christ as he prayed for the peace of God which would allow him to under go the ordeal of the crucifixion. Those hands reached out to the disciples who were with him in the garden and woke them from their sleep as they could not stay awake while Jesus was praying. Those hands reached out and touched the ear of the man that Peter hurt with his sword as the guards came for Jesus. Jesus reached out and healed the man’s ear as those hand were extend in compassion for this man.
Yes that hands of Jesus are truly remarkable hands.
But I wander as the crowds saw Jesus ride into town, did they realize what was really going on. Did they see more than just a man riding on a colt, did they see Jesus as the Son of God or did they miss it. Did they just see that Jesus was king for a day and nothing more.