Summary: This is a Palm Sunday sermon dealing with Jesus going to Jerusalem to cleanse the temple.
“I’ve Have Got To Go”
How many of you remember that great theological parable sung by Glady’s Knights and the Pips. It is the story of a man who left Ga to pursue his dream of becoming a movie star in Los Angelos. While there he falls in love with the singer of the song and she with him. Her life was centered in LA, but his roots were in Ga. He never comes close to his dream, and finally he decides to give it all up and return on the Midnight train to Ga.
He sells all he has in order to purchase a one way ticket back to Ga. Glady’s knows he won’t return to LA and she has to decide to either say goodbye to him and remain with her family and friends or say good bye to family and friends to go and be with him. She declares several times, “I’ve got to go, I’ve got to go, I’ve got to go. Her reason is simple. “I’d rather live in His world, than live without him in mine.”
It cost her a lot to follow the one she loved. If you could have seen Jesus and the way he was moving the weeks before Palm Sunday, you may have asked Jesus, what’s the rush sit down for a while. Jesus had his face turned toward Jersualem and seemed as though he was fixated on getting there no matter what the cost.
On one occasion the leaders who were very jealous of Jesus’s popularity, had decided they were going to kill him if he ever entered the city of Bethany again. The word was out that Jesus was on somebody’s hit list. But then one of Jesus’s friends in Bethany became very sick and needed Jesus’s attention. When he told the disciples, I’m going to see about Lazarus back in Bethany, they were shocked. They said, “now Jesus it was just a couple of days ago that the people try to stone you to death, and now you’re going back. What is wrong with you.” Jesus basic reply was, “I’ve got to go.” They said, “well let’s go and die with Him.
A couple of days before Palm Sunday Jesus was leading the way toward Jerusalem knowing that a contract was out on his life again. The disciples were astonished at his bravery. The other people following along behind were very afraid of what would happen next. Would they end up losing their lives because of Jesus? When they stopped to get some rest, Jesus took the 12 off by themselves. He said, “now listen fellows, we are going up to Jerusalem. I will be betrayed to the religious leaders. I’ll be condemn to death, mocked, spat upon, whipped and killed. In three days I will rise from the dead”
The disciples had no idea what Jesus meant by rising from the dead in three days, but they did understand the other part about whipping and dying. No doubt the disciples said, “But Jesus we do not have to go to Jerusalem. There are plenty of other places we could go and preach. Have you thought about Jericho, or Capernaum or Galilee. We can wait until things die down before going back to Jerusalem You’ve escaped from the leaders before and you can do it again.”
I can imagine Jesus looking at them and saying, “but fellows, you do not understand. I’ve got to go.” Peter, one of the disciples went so far as to say, “Never Lord, this shall never happen to you.” Jesus looked at Peter and said, “Get behind me Satan. You are a stumbling block to me. You do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men.” I have got to go.
Why did Jesus have to go to Jerusalem? Suppose you had a week left to live. Where is it that you would have to go? What is it that you would have to do? What would you want to make sure was competed before your left? For Jesus, he had to go to Jerusalem because that’s where God’s will for His life was. Remember the words, “I’d rather live in his world, than life without him in mine.” Jesus would rather live in obedience to God’s will and be in God’s world, than to seek to preserve his own life and God be missing from it.
Every day we are faced with choices. Some are real hard decisions we have to make. Some seem insignificant, but they will change our lives in ways they we never would have imagined. Each choice comes with a price tag. Jesus could have decided to not go to Jerusalem that week. He knew what a price he would have to pay. If he had of decided to stay in Galilee, there would be no Palm Sunday. There would be no Holy Week. There would be no resurrection. There would be no Glenville New Life Community Church. There would be no hope for us when we stand in the presence of God to give an account for the lives we have lived. But because love for us and a love for God, Jesus went to Jerusalem.