READ IN YOUR BIBLE:
Ephesians 1:3-14; Luke 19:29-48
“Rejoice, O people of Zion! Shout in triumph, O people of Jerusalem! Look, your king is coming to you. He is righteous and victorious, yet he is humble, riding on a donkey--riding on a donkey's colt.”
Zechariah 9:9 | NLT
Palestine, 30AD, the Romans have occupied Israel. God’s people are oppressed under a foreign dictatorship; their money collected to power the Roman war machine that sustains a fragile peace. In a small town outside the capital, a crowd gathers around a teacher. He is not particularly handsome or impressive to look at. But He is gentle and kind. Someone says he made a packed lunch feed five thousand people. Word is He can heal the sick. Someone else says He raised their dead daughter back to life. His followers have grown in number. Could this be the long-awaited hope of the nations?
His followers push through the crowd. They have a donkey they’ve borrowed from someone in town. They throw cloaks across it’s back and the young teacher climbs up. A murmur runs through the crowd.
“This is it!”
“Well, He’s heading to Jerusalem, isn’t He?”
The lone rider becomes a procession, as the crowd around Him begin to chant, “Hail to the King of Israel!”.
They cut branches from nearby palms and lay them ahead of where He will pass by.
“Praise God!" they shout, “Blessings to the one who comes in God’s Name!”
Nothing surprises God. Before creating the world, He already planned how to adopt us into His family. For thousands of years, God spoke to people about His plan. Five hundred years before Jesus was born, God spoke through His servant, Zechariah, promising a King who would be righteous and victorious, yet humble, riding on a donkey. Jesus was that King.
John, in his gospel, draws the connection between events in Jerusalem and those written by Zechariah. “Jesus found a young donkey and rode on it, fulfilling the prophecy that said: “Don’t be afraid, people of Jerusalem. Look, your King is coming, riding on a donkey’s colt.” (John 12:14,15 NLT)
Over the next seven days, beginning with Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem, we will see how the events surrounding Jesus death and resurrection were all planned by God, foreseen by the prophets, and even predicted by Jesus himself.
Through betrayal, trial, and death, Jesus’ triumphal procession never ended. Long after Jesus had died and risen again, Paul would write, “thanks be to God, who always leads us in [Jesus] Christ's triumphal procession and through us spreads the aroma of the knowledge of him in every place” (2 Corinthians 2:14 ESV). Just as the leaders in Jesus’ day tried to silence the children singing His praise, today there is often resistance to the good news of Jesus and what He has done. But we do not need to be silent. Today, we can raise our voices in praise of God.
Even when we don’t feel very triumphant, Jesus is still triumphant. When we submit our lives to Him, His victory and triumph can begin to impact on our lives too. Do you know Jesus as your King? If you don’t, today, you can pray and offer your life to Him, allowing Him to become your King, enabling Him to fill you with His Spirit, life, and power.
Father God, I thank You for sending Jesus, that He is the King that You promised. I confess I have lived as my own boss, lived my own way, doing whatever pleased me. Today I surrender my life to Jesus. I ask that you receive me and become my King. I want to live Your way, God, doing whatever pleases You. Please, fill me with Your Spirit, life, and power, so I can tell others about You. Thank you, God. Amen.
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?
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