Summary: We will look at the Triumphal Entry of Jesus into Jerusalem and discover three important principles for our lives.
The Triumphal Entry
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."
4This 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.’
The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. They brought the donkey and the colt, placed their cloaks on them, and Jesus sat on them. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,
"Hosanna to the Son of David!"
"Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!"
"Hosanna in the highest!"
When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, "Who is this?"
The crowds answered, "This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.”
Jerusalem- the Holy City during the Holy Festival of Passover. All the religious leaders would be present. The scene is set and then enters Jesus.
Jesus did not enter Jerusalem in this way by mistake. Jesus entered Jerusalem on a donkey very deliberately. He would be seen by the great crowds, all would see his entry into Jerusalem and all would know days later that the same man who came in on a donkey had risen from the dead and was indeed Lord of all.
No sneaking into town for Jesus, no discreet ministry anymore. His ministry and His identity were now out in the open for all to see.
Jesus’ entry was both humble (the colt of the donkey being the most humble animal to ride.) and royal. He rode while everyone else walked. Palm branches were used to pay homage and victory to a King.
Three Lessons we can take from the Triumphal Entry.
A. We live for an audience of one.
The crowds were very quick to gather along side the road for Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem. Causes me to think of parades. I can remember being a spectator at so many parades. Thanksgiving Day parades were the best. Sure the marching bands played great music, the fire trucks were loud, the old classic cars were cool. But all came to see one man really. My older sister would tell me “Scoot up here- here he comes....then he would come into full view- Santa Clause. Yes! Christmas couldn’t be far off now.
The people lines the streets leading into Jerusalem. The King was coming. Think about this crowd. Jesus always drew a crowd. He went up and preached on the mount- with large crowds listening. He healed the sick pressed on every side by large crowds. As they followed him, he ended up feeding all 5,000 of them. Now a large crowd to welcome him into Jerusalem. Soon the large crowd would turn on him and instead of shouting “Hosanna“, the would be shouting “Crucify Him.”
You see that is the way it is with public opinion. Very fickle. One day they love you and the next day they hate you. Some people like you, others can’t tolerate you.
We cannot live for the opinions of others.
You and I do not live for the audience and opinions of others. We live for the audience of one. Jesus Christ.
Some loved Jesus, some hated Him, that didn’t change who he was.
They wanted Jesus to be an earthy king and ruler. In fact earlier, crowds had tried to take him by force and make him their king. Others were convinced he was Satan in the flesh.
Public opinion did not change how Jesus lived, or who Jesus was.
Jesus was living for an audience of one.
Some will love us, some will hate us, that doesn’t change who we are.
It shouldn’t change how we live.
Legalism- live for my expectations.
Free life in Christ- live for Jesus and Jesus alone.
If we are living for an audience of one, then we can handle criticism without it killing us.
When we lay down to sleep at night, it is not man’s opinion of us that matters, but God’s opinion.
B. Life is full of valleys and mountaintops.
Psalm 23. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for though are with me.
I love rollercoasters. The bigger, the faster, the more frightening, the better! It seems the higher they climb, the farther and faster they fall. Life sometimes can feel like a wild out-of-control rollercoaster ride. The good news is that God is in control. No matter if we feel like life is spinning out of control, moving too fast, and we aren’t sure what lies around the next turn, God is there.