Summary: This sermon will be looking at Jesus’ final entry into Jerusalem as He came to the end of His long road toward His earthly purpose and final work for us all on this earth, the cross. It looks at how easy it is for us to get off track on what our final destinations as disciples is meant to be.
INTRO: Back in February Pat and I were returning from a week in Florida. We have made the trip from DC here to Dillsburg many times. When we travel we often will listen to an audio book to help pass the time. This year we were coming up from Richmond and into DC and listening to our book and traveling along. We had stopped for a rest stop and I hadn’t turned back on the GPS as I was confident I knew the way around the beltway and over on 270 and up 15.
Unfortunately, that was a mistake. I was so absorbed in the story on the book that I didn’t realize I had missed an exit and was heading north onto 83 toward York. Needless to say, and sad to admit, by the time I figured it out we were 30 minutes out of our way and had to back track into DC to get on the correct road. We were traveling in the basic right direction, but we were certainly heading to the wrong destination.
The disciples in our Scriptures today were in a similar situation. They had been traveling along with their guide named Jesus and they were pretty confident they were on the right road following Him. However, circumstances and events happened that made them lose track of where their journey with Jesus was really going. They had developed a convoluted idea of where their destination was going to be.
Today we will be looking at the Jesus’ final entry into Jerusalem as He came to the end of His long road toward His earthly purpose and final work for us all on his earth, the cross.
I. We Are All On A Journey Toward Some Destination.(37-38)
As he was drawing near, at the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen, saying, "Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!
A. People often end at the wrong destination.
The Disciples: We can’t be certain what was running through the minds of the disciples that day. Maybe they were seeing all the adoration and praise of their rabbi and were simply overjoyed that Jesus and they were finally getting the publicity and the acclaim they deserved! No more sleeping out under the stars most nights living in poverty. Finally, they were receiving the praise and adoration they deserved!
Or, perhaps with that, they were aware of the fulfillment of prophecy?
Zechariah 9:9-10 (NIV) Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion! Shout, Daughter Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and victorious, lowly and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.10 I will take away the chariots from Ephraim and the warhorses from Jerusalem, and the battle bow will be broken.
He will proclaim peace to the nations. His rule will extend from sea to sea and from the River[a] to the ends of the earth.
Jesus fulfilled prophecy perfectly. The long-awaited Messiah had come, the king of Israel, and not just of Israel but of all the nations. Jerusalem would be his capital city. From here he would rule the world in peace and righteousness.
But, how would he do it? Would he whip up the enthusiastic crowds and storm the Roman praetorium—a people's revolution? Or would he call down fire from heaven to consume the enemies of God? However, He was going to do it, it was going to be amazing and soon!
The Problem was, as we shall see, is that the disciples and those there that day were veering off the road Jesus was on in their thinking. They heading toward a wrong destination!
The Pharisees – The passage says the Pharisees wanted the people to stop! 39Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples!”
We must recognize that they were the protectors of all things religious and political in Jerusalem. It was their responsibility to protect the people against false prophets and religions that corrupted their status quo and to watch over and protect the people from political disaster with their occupying government.
So, they had a double reason for wanting this kind of welcome silenced. On the one hand, this Jesus was a threat to their authority, and they envied his popularity. On the other hand, they feared a Roman backlash to all this seditious talk of another king.
John 11:48- 48 If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation.”
Jesus responds to their call for a rebuke, 40 “I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.”