Summary: This series is based loosely on the facts and stories found in the "Living Lent" sermon series written by Donald Neidigk.

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Living Lent 6 - “The Donkey Reveals a Burdened Savior”

We are in the home stretch now. Lent… is coming to an end. We have spent five full weeks trying to get ready for Easter by focusing on Christ and preparing our hearts and minds for that splendid Easter morning. How many of you are ready for Easter? Well, ready or not here it comes… it’s time for us to get our Holy Week on! Because in today’s scripture passage… here comes the king! Why don’t we start out this morning by getting in the right mood… turn to someone next to you and say “Here comes the king!”

As a church, we have spent this time hearing from animals to teach us lessons about Christ and to help us prepare for Easter! Just for a quick review… we’ve heard from a fox… we’ve heard from a donkey… we’ve heard from a dove, we’ve heard from a chicken, and last week… we heard from (of all things) a vulture. This week we are visited by an old friend. Week one started out with the donkey… and guess what… he’s back. There was just so much that the donkey had to teach us that he couldn’t quite fit into just one sermon. One final thing before we read our scripture lesson… if you have enjoyed these lessons on the animals, and you want to know how it is going to end… you are going to have to come to the sunrise service on Easter. The 10:15 service is going to be something entirely different, so if you want to here the closing message… please join us at the 7:30 am sunrise service Easter morning. Now let’s turn to our text:

John 12:12-16 12

The next day the great crowd that had come for the Feast heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem. 13 They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting, "Hosanna!" "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!" "Blessed is the King of Israel!" 14 Jesus found a young donkey and sat upon it, as it is written, 15 "Do not be afraid, O Daughter of Zion; see, your king is coming, seated on a donkey's colt." 16 At first his disciples did not understand all this. Only after Jesus was glorified did they realize that these things had been written about him and that they had done these things to him.

Folks… here comes the king! And there are three questions that we need to explore as we examine the significance of this event. What does the arrival of the king mean? What does it mean to the crowds? What does it mean to Jesus? And what does it mean to us?

For the Crowds:

People were making complete spectacles of themselves… throwing their cloaks down upon the path… tearing palm branches down to further pave the way. Several others waved the branches in a fine procession… this could mean only one thing… a King. But what King would be coming to Jerusalem during Passover? The Jews had no King… and any other king in the world knows far too well to avoid Jerusalem… the city of David itself… during the time of our Passover.

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