Palm Sunday

Palm Sunday

Pastor Jonathan Drake - April 2, 2023

Community Group Study Notes


  1. Have someone in your group give a brief recap of Sunday’s message, highlighting the primary Scripture points of Luke 19:28-48 and the main idea of the message. 
  2. What did you learn about Palm Sunday? How did this message strengthen and/or correct your previous ideas about Palm Sunday?
  3. Read Luke 19:41-42. Jesus wept over the city of Jerusalem. Do you ever weep or lament for our city? What is your response to the sin in the world? Does your heart break for what breaks God’s heart?
  4. Has your opinion of Jesus ever changed when He didn’t meet your expectations? How did you renew your faith and trust and continue praising him? 
  5. Do you partner with the Body of Christ to make the Church a welcoming place for all who are seeking God? Do you make your Community Group a welcoming place? 
  6. Who can you invite to Easter Sunday service next week? Spend time as a group praying over the individuals you intend to invite. 

Action Step

As you prepare your heart for Easter Sunday, spend at least one day this week reflecting and journaling. Write down the Easter story in your own words. What does this story mean to you personally? What does it mean to the Church? What does it mean to the world? Based on your reflection, what action step do you need to take in your life to better reflect your understanding of the Easter story?  

Mobilization Challenge

Spend time praying over those in your life who don’t yet know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. 

  • Invite at least 2 people to Easter service next weekend!
  • Share the Easter story with at least 3 people this week!


Sermon Transcript

Good morning, church family. So good to be able to open up God's word together with you this day. So please open with me to Luke 19. We'll be in the third gospel this morning in Luke 19. As you're turning there, I have something I wanna share with you. And it's actually a pretty unpopular opinion. I'm aware. So you may think less of me, and that's okay. But here it is, it's not like a big, big deal. But I gotta tell you, I really don't like parades. And I'm sorry if you're a parade person, I'm sorry if you're that person that, you know, I love a parade like you, like that's your theme song for life. But it's just not me. And I've tried and I've given it a fair shot, and I've gone to several and I've gone all over, and I'm just not a fan, and maybe I need to work on me, so I'm aware of that. But like fire engine blasting sounds 12 feet from my eardrum, not my idea of summer fun. And I'm just generally. Sorry if you're offended by this, I really am not coming for anybody, but I'm just generally not impressed with civilians walking in the middle of the street. So like, maybe I need to change my idea of entertainment, but it's just, now granted, you're thinking, okay, Jonathan, that's not really fair. I could be convinced there are some occasions that are parade worthy. Now, my grandfather served in World War II, he served on a destroyer ship in the South Pacific, and you know, troops coming home from war, parade worthy, all right. That's a parade. Now that, that's a parade, okay. Or different category, different significance of course, not on the same scale of course, but when the Bills win the Super Bowl, someone was ready for that. I don't know. Either he was at the first service, or he was waiting for me to say that. When the Bills win the Super Bowl, that's a victory parade, I'm there. I'll see you next February, all right? So me and the gentleman that clapped, we'll be there leading the parade. Or when the Saber win the Stanley Cup, that's a victory parade. Now, I'll see you in a couple years, but like that's, that's a parade. But there's some parades, I'm just like, is this really necessary? Like, is this really the best we could do? So now with that as a backdrop, and now that you think less of me for being not a parade person, here's the backdrop. When we open up Luke 19, as Jesus walks into Jerusalem, on this day that we call Palm Sunday, it seems like did Jesus just, was he in the wrong place at the wrong time? Like, he get caught up in this parade and all of a sudden, like he's in the middle of a parade heading into Jerusalem. And what is the significance of that? Is this like, how do you even celebrate Palm Sunday? What is this just a day we, you know, tip our cap to like, hey, it's Arbor Day. Okay. Like, all right. Great, good news, it's Palm Sunday. Cool, awesome. Jesus arrived in Jerusalem. But if we would just pause, and allow the scripture to press in on us, we would see that there's much more than just a parade. So our text is Luke 19, begin with me in verse 28 and we'll stop at 40 for now. It says this in Luke 19:28, "After Jesus had said this, "he went on ahead going up to Jerusalem, "as he approached Bethphage and Bethany "at the hill called Mount of Olives, "he sent two of his disciples saying to them, "'Go to the village ahead of you, and as you enter it, "'you will find a colt tied there, "'which no one has ever ridden. "'Untie it and bring it here. "'If anyone asks you why you untying it say, "'the Lord needs it.' "Those who were sent ahead went and found it "just as he had told them. "As they were untying the colt, "its owners asked them, 'Why are you untying the colt?' "They replied, 'The Lord needs it.' "They brought it to Jesus, "threw their cloaks on the colt and put Jesus on it. "As he went along, people spread their cloaks on the road. "When he came near the place "where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, "the whole crowd of disciples "began joyfully to praise God in loud voices "for all the miracles they had seen, "'Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord, "'peace in heaven and glory in the highest.' "Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, "'Teacher, rebuke your disciples.' "'I tell you,' he replied, 'if they keep quiet, "'the stones will cry out.'" There's a number of realities that emerge from this story. And here's the first one, the king's entrance. You know, sometimes we say this phrase, "Man, that person, they know how to make an entrance." Well, here's Jesus' entrance into Jerusalem. He comes up to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover, as he had done all throughout his life. This Passover, just like every other Passover in his life and every other Passover before it, going all the way back. But some, for some reason, and for some very important reasons, this Passover is going to be different. In fact, Passover itself is never going to be the same after what happens in the city. So Jesus is about to approach Jerusalem, and as he does, he knows what awaits him. Just in the prior chapter, in chapter 18, which is really probably only a handful of hours, or maybe a day before at the most, in Luke 18 we read this, this is just the prior chapter. "Jesus took the 12 aside and told them, "'We are going up to Jerusalem, "'and everything that is written by the prophets "'about the Son of Man will be fulfilled. "'They will flog him, and kill him. "'On the third day, he will rise again.' "The disciples did not understand any of this." And Jesus tells him the itinerary, and he's describing his entrance, the king's entrance into Jerusalem. And he says, I know what awaits me there. Everything that you read in the scriptures is gonna be fulfilled. But the disciples didn't understand, their eyes weren't ready to see it, their ears weren't ready to hear it. Jesus knows his hour has come. You see, up until this point in the gospels, and you've read the gospels, you know this, that many times Jesus is saying, hey, don't tell anyone that I healed you, right. Like, don't tell anybody. Or he'll say some things like, "My hour has not yet come." So he's actually been holding back the full publicizing of his ministry, because he knows the time wasn't right. But this is the time, and the hour has come, and Jesus is gonna take the lid off of that, and that's gonna start with his entrance. And so he says, "Guys, we need a ride." Well, he doesn't say that exactly, but he says, "Go into the town and you'll find a colt, a donkey, "and I want you to go get it. "And when they ask you what you're doing, "you just say, the Lord needs it." Have you ever found this strange? Like this is the weirdest thing ever? What's happening here? And I wonder who he sent. Don't you just wish you knew? Was it Peter? Like, come on. Because like Peter is never gonna be shy about anything. And so Jesus sends the two disciples, and they walk up to the donkey and they start to untie it. And sure enough, the owner says, "Hey, what are you doing?" And the disciple looks at his script, "The Lord needs it." "Oh, okay, why didn't you say so, right. "Like, go ahead." I mean, is this just the weirdest thing? Well, here's maybe just a real practical way we can look at that. Where is this happening? We read that this is somewhere between Bethphage and Bethany, these two tiny towns that are close by on the other side of the Mount of Olives. And the town of Bethany, as you may remember, was the hometown of some of Jesus' very dear friends, Mary, Martha and Lazarus, their brother, whom he had just brought back from the dead in the town of Bethany, just a little while before, just a handful of days before. So it's possible that these people who owned the donkey knew exactly who the Lord was. In fact, it's not a stretch to think that maybe they were even at the funeral for Lazarus. And so when they heard that this guy, oh, that guy needs the donkey, he can have it, right. Like, go right ahead. So Jesus gets on the donkey. But look, this isn't just a really cool demonstration of Jesus' omniscience, that he knows everything and he knows. Yes, that's true. This act is laden with significance, it's loaded with meaning, and everybody who witnessed it knew that. You see, if we reach back into the history of Israel, king David, when he was coming to the end of his life, he makes his son, Solomon the next king. And when he makes his son Solomon the next king, he puts him not on a white horse, but on his own mule, on a beast of burden, on a lowly animal, right. Not on a white horse, triumphant, like all the kings around them, on a mule. And everybody who sees this, knows this as a shout out to the one who's gonna reign on David's throne forever is gonna look like this. In fact, it's also in keeping with the prophecy that Zechariah recorded in Zechariah 9. And some of the gospel writers mention this specifically, Luke doesn't, but here it is in Zechariah 9:9, "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." And so this significant event in Israel's history is being pointed to, and everybody knows this, so they're rejoicing, they're giving out the red carpet treatment, they're putting their cloaks on the ground, they're putting branches down. John tells us that they are palm branches, and they're showing all this adulation and praise to Jesus, and they're quoting from Psalm 118, "Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord." And this psalm was frequently sung on the way to Jerusalem for Passover. And so they're shouting this at the top of their lungs, and then there's this massive crowd that's forming. It starts with just the 12, and then the crowd of disciples who were adherence to Jesus teaching, and then it's pilgrims who are also making their way to Jerusalem for the Feast of Passover. And they're all yelling, "Blessed is the king." Well, of course this is gonna grab the attention of the Pharisees. And so some of the Pharisees, the religious leaders in their day, they speak up and they say, "Teacher, rebuke your disciples." How they could even shout over the crowd, I don't know, but they say, "Teacher, rebuke these disciples." But Jesus responds this way in verse 40 of our text, look at it again. He says, "'I tell you,' he replied, "'if they keep quiet,'" if they were silenced, "'the stones will cry out.'" The rocks themselves will cry out. Now this has layered meaning, which we'll see as we go on. But Jesus' words pack a punch. You see, they're making this song, but right now they're singing the song of, this is the King. But in just a few short days, that song was silenced. Because as we read in the story, and if even we just continued in Luke, it's not on the screen, but if you just looked up yourself in Luke 23, you'd see that in just a few days on Friday, this same crowd that is singing, blessed be the king. Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord. That same crowd, it says in Luke 23, the whole crowd shouted together, "Away with this man, "crucify him, give us Barabbas instead." The song is silenced. Jesus, I think, is saying, of course, on one level, if no one was here to sing this song, all of creation is longing for the king. I think that's implied here. But there's something else that's going on here, because this song did get silenced, it shifted, it changed. The tune changed between Sunday and Friday. It's one thing to sing the song of blessed is the king on a Sunday when everybody's singing it. But by Friday, Jesus had not met their expectations, which we'll see in just a moment. By Friday, their view of him had shifted, that he didn't live up to their measurement for Messiah. And so the song changed. I think the obvious question for us, as we press in on this story, or rather let this story press in on us, does our song change depending on our circumstances? Does our tune shift from Sunday to Friday? Is it one thing for us to raise our voice with the crowd, a crowd like this, but then when we're in the thick of it, and things haven't gone as planned, that our circumstances aren't what we want them to be, that it's not measuring up to what we had hoped for ourselves. And you know, after all, I know the plans I have for myself declares me, plans to prosper me. And when that doesn't happen, what happens to my song? So, we see the king's entrance. Our text continues in verse 41. Look at this in Luke 19, "As he approached Jerusalem, "as Jesus approached Jerusalem and saw the city, "he wept over it. "And he said, 'If you, even you, "'had only known on this day what would bring you peace, "'but now it is hidden from your eyes. "'The days will come upon you "'when your enemies will build an embankment against you, "'and encircle you and hem you in on every side. "'They will dash you to the ground, "'you and the children within your walls. "'They will not leave one stone on another, "'because you did not recognize "'the time of God's coming to you.'" We saw first the king's entrance, but second, we see the king's tears. Jesus has approached Jerusalem, as I said, many times. He's gone to the Passover, he's gone up at least three times each year like every Jewish man would, for these festivals. He's done this journey. Like this journey dozens and dozens and dozens of times. But this time it's different. It wouldn't be a mathematical exaggeration that in Jesus' 33 plus years of life, that he had taken a journey like this one over a hundred times. But it hit him differently this time, because he weeps. But let's be clear, because lest we get stuck in like sentimental this, we might think of these tears as like daytime soap opera tears, one single perfect streak coming down on the left side. The light glistening perfectly off of it. That's not what this is. Luke had a lot of words at his disposal for crying, for weeping. And the word that he uses here in Luke 19:41 is a word that carries with it a meaning of wailing, sobbing, heaving. You know, that deep ache that comes out in tears, that's what he does. Jesus is wailing as he sees Jerusalem. The king is in tears, but it's not for the reason you think. We already saw that he knew what awaited him. And if any of us knew the kind of death that Jesus died. If we knew that that kind of death was waiting for us, yeah, there'd be some tears. We probably wouldn't even be able to leave Bethany, but that's not why he's crying. It says that when he saw the city. Jesus isn't crying for himself, he's weeping for the people who have rejected him. He's weeping for the city that had turned their backs on God's deliverance. You could say that with these tears, Jesus is raining on his own parade. But as Jesus weeps, he pronounces this, this statement of what's going to happen to Jerusalem. But these words don't carry a bite of, I told you so. These words are not too little, too late, too bad, that's not here. Jesus is saying this in between his tears, this is sovereign sorrow for a city that has rejected him, rejected their own Messiah. And if this is happening in and around 30 AD, it was just four decade, it'll be just four decades into the future, 70 AD that everything that Jesus said in verses 42 through 44, exactly like that happens. So Titus, the military general turned emperor, not Titus, the associate of Paul, okay. So Titus who would become the emperor of Rome, he encircles the city. He does exactly this. He hems them in on every side, and they did not leave one stone upon another. They decimated Jerusalem, they burned the temple to the ground, to the point that it was never, Jerusalem was never the same, Israel was never the same. The stones were crying out in those moments, as not one was left upon the other, exactly as Jesus has said. And he says, if you had only known the terms of peace that were made available to you. But then these words, "But you didn't recognize the time "that God was coming to you." You didn't recognize the day of his visitation, some translations say. Earlier in the gospel of Luke, Jesus says this in Luke 13:34, "Jerusalem, Jerusalem, "you who kill the prophets and stoned those sent to you. "How often I have longed to gather your children, "to gather as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, "and you were not willing." They were blinded by their refusal to embrace Jesus. You were not willing. You had the prophets, you had the scriptures, you had the law, you had the temple, you had everything. The Messiah himself was born in your backyard, and you were not willing to accept the terms of peace that were made available to you. You didn't see it. You were blinded by your own disobedience, blinded by your own rebellion. And if you had only known. If you had only known that I long to gather you in, that I love you so much that I wanted to wrap you up, but you were not willing. So Jesus weeps. I think the question for us, maybe a twofold question, do we weep for our city? When we look out over our neighborhood, our street, our community, our city, our county, the Buffalo Niagara region, our country, our world, has God ever brought us to the point of brokenness for the people around us? Because eternal judgment, ladies and gentlemen, is far worse than what happened in Jerusalem in 70 AD. And that was occasion enough for Jesus to weep, to weep, not for himself, but for the city. When we look at Buffalo, do we weep? Is our heart broken for the fact that there are millions of people around us who don't know Christ, who are refusing his terms of peace? Does that break us, or are we just so mad all the time at the people who act like they are full of sin when they do? Are we just so busy being angry we don't have any space for tears? And maybe if not, maybe that leads to the second question, does your view of God align with this? If your heart's never been broken to that point of weeping over your city, is it because you don't have a category for a God who weeps? That this is how God views the people around us. If you had only known the time of your visitation, if you had only recognized it. And God is weeping, because there is coming a time of judgment, and it will be total. Does your view of God align with this? Or maybe there's some of you who have actually kept God at an arm's length, because your view of God is not that. But rather that he's just always waiting for you to mess up, that God's ready with a lightning bolt anytime you make a slip up, and he's just gonna light you up anytime. That even if you did come to him, he'd say, "What took you so long?" But you've actually used that as an excuse to stay away from him. But the only problem is, you're creating space between you and a God that doesn't exist. And the really tragic thing is you've put space in between you and the God who actually does, because there's a God, his name is Jesus, and when he looks at your life, he's broken that you think you can do it without him. He's weeping over the fact that you want to do it your own way, on your own time, that you don't need his terms of peace, you've got it all together, thank you very much. He weeps over your soul.he King's entrance, the King's tears, and then lastly in this story, the King's house. I'll come back to that text in just a second. Number three, the King's house. As our story starts to turn towards its conclusion, let me show you those verses right there from 19:45, and following, "When Jesus entered the temple courts, "he began to drive out those who were selling. "'It is written,' he said to them, "'my house will be a house of prayer, "'but you have made it a den of robbers.' "Every day he was teaching at the temple, "but the chief priests, the teachers of the law, "and the leaders among the people were trying to kill him, "yet they could not find any way to do it, "because all the people hung on his words." This is incredible. Jesus enters the city, he's still, he's still wiping away tears, I think, as he enters into the temple compound. Now it's important for some context, so stay with me for just a second, as we have the temple compound, we've got this larger outer court, that is called the Court of the Gentiles, and anybody can go there including non-Jews. So this is kind of the perimeter, and it's large and it's vast and it's open. And then within that is the Court of the Women, so that only Jewish women could come this far. And then within that, the Court of the Israelites, which was for where only Israelite men could go. And then within that, the Court of the Priests, where only the priest could go, you're catching the theme. And then within that is the temple itself. And within that is the Holy of Holies. Concentric circles of access, right? You get that. So it's in these temple courts, primarily the Court of the Gentiles, that there are people who are selling animal sacrifices, and exchanging currency, and it's all happening really mostly in the Court of the Gentiles. Now this act of selling animal sacrifices, and exchanging the currency is not really the problem itself, okay. So for Passover, everybody has to have a sacrifice, everybody has to have a lamb, right. So it's easier if you're traveling from a great distance, as many of these adherence to the faith were, and they were traveling great distances to come to Jerusalem. You know, don't pack it in your carry-on, buy it when you land, all right. That kind of a thing, right. So they get to the temple, and this is, and here's why it's convenient, this is a pre-approved sacrifice. So lest you lug that animal all the way from your hometown, and you get to the temple and they say, "Sorry, this one has a blemish on it's left ear, "that's not gonna be valid. "We're gonna need you to go right over here to lane eight "and pick up your new sacrifice, right." Like, this sounds funny, but that's actually what was happening. And in addition to that, there was a temple tax that had to be paid that every Jewish person had to pay. And so that temple tax was also collected often at Passover, but you couldn't pay the temple tax unless you had the temple currency. So you couldn't pay in a Roman coin, that's for sure. You couldn't pay in any other coin, that's for sure. So it had to be converted. So again, none of that's problematic on its own, but what was really the problem, and why Jesus has this reaction, twofold. One, the people who were doing the selling and the exchanging were taking advantage of people. So the markup on the sacrificial animals was extreme, because of the convenience of a pre-approved sacrificial lamb, right. It's like buying a bottle of water at the airport, okay, $14, that sounds fair and reasonable. All right. Yeah, great. That was from the tap, I'm just gonna tell you, right. So they're marking up the prices way out of reach, and then, so they're taking advantage of the poor, and really everybody. And then the exchange rate was not equitable, it was not fair, it was not balanced. And so people were taken advantage of, just as an aside, this was just an aside. Some scholars have discovered evidence that the booths that were in the temple courts, these money changing booths and animal booths, that they were called the booths of Annas, A-N-N-A-S. Now the reason that's interesting is because Annas was high priest emeritus, and his family and including his son-in-law, Caiaphas, you remember all of these characters that Jesus encounters on the night before his crucifixion, they control everything that's happening. So it's benefiting their bottom line. I mean, talk about corruption, right. Like it's benefiting their bottom line. All of this that's happening, it funnels into this guy's family, into his pocketbook. And then Jesus comes in, and starts flipping tables. Like, do you think that everybody was like, oh, good, finally Jesus is here to set things right? No, they were livid. They already had the occasion out on the road coming down the Mount of Olives, and then the ascent into Jerusalem. They already had enough that they were not happy about, now he's hitting their bottom line. Obviously this was a problem, but it was also happening in the Court of the Gentiles. So imagine you're a God-fearer, you're not an ethnic Jew, but you've journeyed all the way to Jerusalem to show your devotion. I mean, how noble, right? And you travel all the way to Jerusalem, and you finally make it to the Court of the Gentiles, 'cause that's as far as you can go because you were born to a Roman family, right, like all of that stuff, all of those scenarios. And you finally get to the Court of the Gentiles, and you're finally gonna say your prayers. And man, you're close to the temple. This is awesome. And there's shouting and haggling, and negotiating and yelling, and animals making animal sounds, and producing what animals produce. And like all of this is happening around you while you're trying to pray, and you're constantly being bumped and interrupted, and you know, every time you start to pray, you get interrupted again. I mean, this is what was happening. And it wasn't an accident that it was happening in the Court of the Gentiles. And so Mark records in his gospel, the full quotation from the prophet Isaiah, here's what it says in Mark 11, "And as he taught them, Jesus said, "'It is it not written, "'my house will be called a house of prayer "'for all nations.'" That part, for all nations, every ethnos, every people group. "'But you have made it a den of robbers.'" Jesus, he says, this should be for everybody, and you're creating a scenario where the Gentiles can't even focus on their worship. My house was to be a house of prayer, and you've turned it into what you've turned it into. So Jesus comes to clean house, but it's not quite what we would expect. It's certainly not what they expected. You know, I wonder. I wonder, as this parade is taking shape outside of Jerusalem, and they're singing, "Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord," and they're man, this is our king. This is the one who's gonna sit on David's throne. And they come into the city of Jerusalem, I wonder if the parade started to get ahead of Jesus a little bit. And this is conjecture, but stay with me for a second. I wonder if the parade started to turn towards Pilate's residence, the delegate from Rome. Because everything's aligning, isn't it? Everything's lining up. We've got the king, he's coming on a donkey, he's from the line of David, it's happening at Passover. Guys, it's happening at Passover. Moses delivered us from the Egyptians at Passover, now Jesus is gonna deliver us from the Romans at Passover. It's perfect. You can't script this. You can't even make this up. This is the stuff for movies. And so they're thinking, he's just, well, let's go to Pilate's house. It's over here, down on the left, second door on the right, and Jesus stops at the temple. As I said, this was the king's house. Now stay with me. What do we typically call a king's house? A palace. Not a trick question. But Jesus doesn't go to a palace. He doesn't go to Pilate's residence, nor even to Herod's, who's like everyone tolerated, both Jews and Romans just tolerated, as he was kind of the middle man. Jesus doesn't go to Herod's house or to Pilate's palace. He goes to the temple, and he starts saying things like, my house. And he's in the temple. You see, Rome wasn't Israel's greatest problem, their sin was. And Jesus is not the Messiah of their expectation, He's the Messiah of their need. Rome's not the biggest problem, Pilate is not the biggest problem, the emperor not the biggest problem. Even Herod, not the biggest problem. But the sin and the rejection of Messiah, that's the biggest problem. And it's that rejection that is going to lead to their destruction in 40 years. But it's right now that the king is in their midst, and he comes to clean house. He says, "My house will be called a house of prayer." This is where you are to relate to me, and you've turn it into something else. You've polluted it. You've made it into a den of robbers. You see, we, we maybe get stuck in the same thing. Just like they wanted Jesus to kick the door in on the Romans and set up the kingdom forever, and he stops at the temple, because he's cleaning house in his temple so that he can prepare a residence among his people, in his people. But we get stuck in the same thing. And Jesus is not the Messiah of our expectations, He's the Messiah of our need. We might even get stuck in thinking that, you know, Jesus, you should just come in on a white horse, and head straight to the capitol, and sort that out. And there's a lot of things that we should be thinking in that direction that needs to be sorted out. But that's not our biggest problem. We're hoping that he will ride by on a white horse to the capitol, and not pause on the donkey to look into the temple, to see what we've done with his residents. I'm talking about here, 'cause this is what he wants. This is what he's after. This is what you were made for. This is what I was designed for, to be his dwelling place, to have this access to the Father. But because of my sin, because of my rejection, my rebellion and yours, we've turned his house into something it was never intended to be. And so we'd love for him to ride on by a white horse, and focus on somebody else's problem, and think about who needs to hear this message. But what the king wants to do is stop right here, say, this is my house. This is the king's house. He's the Messiah of our need. Jesus enters the city, but not as you'd expect, on a donkey not on a white horse. Jesus cries, but it's not why you'd expect, it's for the city, not for himself. Jesus cleans house, but it's not where you'd expect. Our story concludes this way in verse 47, "Every day. "Every day he was teaching at the temple, "but the chief priests, the teachers of the law, "and the leaders among the people were trying to kill him. "Yet they could not find any way to do it, "because all the people hung on his words." At some point, there are really only two responses to the king. At some point there's only two responses, and indifference to Jesus is not a forever option. It's not a forever option, it's a temporary one. I think he's kind of a good teacher, gives us a good example to live, but Son of God, I don't know. Indifference to Jesus, not a forever option. The options are either he is the true king, and we hang on every word he says, or we try to remove him so that we can be king, because he's interfering with our kingdom. That's what was happening to the chief priests, the teachers of the law, and the leaders among the people. Jesus was interfering with their personal kingdom, so they were trying to get rid of him. But there are only two options, either he's the true king or we think we are. Indifference to him is not a forever option. All this from a parade. So yes, like the king, there's some action steps for the king's people. Like the King, we should walk in humility. We should walk in humility because the King does. It would be strange for us to take a posture that the King doesn't take. Yes, like the King, we should weep for our city, and where we lack those tears, we should ask God to break our hearts. For the reality of the severity of sin in our world, and the people we love and the people we live next to, in our communities where we live and work and learn and play that we should ask God to break our hearts for that, so we, like the King, would weep for our city. And like the King, we should join him in the work of cleaning house. Say it's all yours. I'm not gonna hold anything back. I'm not gonna say you can't have access to this part of my life. I'm gonna give you full access. Like the King, we should join him in that work. But this Palm Sunday, let's not just lay down our cloaks on the ground as a symbol of adoration, 'cause Jesus doesn't need any more fans. We should lay down our lives as a demonstration of surrender, because he's looking for disciples. And we sang it before in this morning's gathering, I lay my whole life down before you. That is the best possible way for us to celebrate Palm Sunday, lay your life down before the King. Let's bow together for a word of prayer. Before you head out, if you could just remain with me for a few more short more moments, with your heads bow and your eyes closed. If you're here today and you're a follower of Christ, pray that you would, like me, ask the King to fill us with his presence. Ask him to shine brightly through our lives. People don't need to see us, they need to see Him. Man, that we would align our hearts with the King's, that we would weep for the people around us who don't know Christ, and weep enough to want to do something about it. That we'd give God full access. This building is not his temple, this campus is not his house, your life is, so give him access. Say Jesus, clean up, I'll join you. I'll surrender, wherever you ask me, it's yours. But with your head still bowed and your eyes still closed, maybe there's some of you who are here, and you don't know God personally through Jesus, you've never stepped over a line of faith, and fully surrendered your heart and your life to him. And so maybe, even in this message, you've been wrestling with what you think about God, versus what the scripture says about God. And maybe at a point you have to lay down what you've thought for what's true. That there is God, he loves you, his name is Jesus. And he is not content for you to continue on a path of your own choosing of self-destruction, that leads you further and further away from him. He's not content in that. The scripture says, from God's mouth, "Do I delight in the perishing of sinful people? No. "But rather that they would turn from their ways and live." God doesn't want you to continue on without him. He would rather you turn and live, so turn, and find life as it was meant to be lived, truly life. So in just a moment, I'm gonna dismiss us and our prayer partners will be down front right here in this worship center. And if you need Jesus, you want someone to pray with you and for you, whatever it is, come forward. As everyone else is walking out, you walk down. Come talk to one of our prayer partners, and we'd love to explain to you what it means to follow Christ, to find life in his name. So God, we just, we stop and we say thank you. Our hearts are full of gratitude, knowing what we will remember on Friday, but also knowing what we will celebrate next Sunday. This is the best news ever. But I pray as we pause here on Palm Sunday, that we would be the kind of people who lay down our lives to you. That it would be evident from examining our lives, examining our lives, that you are the King. That people wouldn't have to get so, even so close to us, to know right away that we serve a different master. We repent to the times that we've put ourselves in the spot of the king, and acted like you were there to do our bidding, as if you were the servant. I pray that we'd get it right. Awaken us to your truth. Draw us closer to you. Clean us from the inside out. That the world, that all nations, that every people, that every man, every woman, every child within our reach would see and hear the difference that Jesus makes in our lives. We live for you, Jesus. You are our King. And it's in your name we pray. Amen.

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