Palm Sunday 2021: Christ Came…

Matthew 21:1-9

A kindergarten teacher gave her class a “show and tell”
assignment of bringing something to represent their
religion.

The first child got in front of the class and said, “My
name is Benjamin and I am Jewish and this is the Star of
David.”

The second child got in front of her class and said, “My
name is Mary, I am Catholic and this is the Crucifix.”

The third child got up in front of his class and said, “My
name is Tommy and I am Baptist and this is a casserole.”

As I was preparing for this message, I read a Palm
Sunday sermon written by O.S. Hawkins.
He wrote that the Bible mentions Jesus weeping twice on
the Mount of Olives.
The first time is when His friend Lazarus has died.
The second time is when He is preparing to enter
Jerusalem for the passion week.

Luke’s account of the Triumphal Entry describes Jesus
weeping over the sin of Israel. cf Luke 19:41
Hawkins’ point is that Jesus loved the people.

He came to Jerusalem in a much different way than
people expected.
Palm Sunday isn’t so much about the pomp and
circumstance as it is about God showing mankind His
plan to redeem them from their sin.

Today we are going to be studying Matthew’s account of
Jesus’ Triumphal Entry
Matthew 21:1-9

Let’s discuss some context as we begin.

This was the time of the Passover, so the city would have
been very crowded with Jews coming to celebrate this
feast. There were likely over 2 million people there.

Disciples

The disciples had spent 3 years with Jesus.
They witnessed many miracles, healings, demons being
cast out, they heard Jesus’ sermon on the Mount, some
of them saw His transfiguration, they knew Him well.
They trusted Him.
So when Jesus asked them to go and find a donkey and
bring it to Him, they went immediately believing that
what He said would be true.

Donkey

Matthew is the only text that describes both the donkey
and a colt. Jesus rode only one and it was the colt that
had never been ridden before. It was special for Jesus.
We will talk more about the colt later.

Directions

Jesus told the disciples exactly what to do and even what
they should say if anyone asked them what they were
doing with the donkey that didn’t belong to them.
I see this as an example of the Lordship of Christ.
Jesus is God and God owns the cattle on 1000 hills.
Everything belongs to Him.
So, when He directed the disciples to say the Lord has
need of it, He was basically just commandeering what
already belonged to Him.

Today we are not just celebrating the fact that Jesus
came to Jerusalem, we are going to see
How He Came to Jerusalem.

Christ Came Courageously

Jesus came into Jerusalem to face His death
Remember what O.S. Hawkins preached about in his
sermon? Jesus wept over Israel. He knew that this would
be a rough week.
The king was coming, but not in the way the people
thought.
He understood that the crown He would wear would be a
crown of thorns.

He understood that there was no other cup for Him to
drink but the cup of obedience to the Father.
He understood that not everyone was excited to see Him
The Pharisees and scribes saw Him as a heretic, a
blasphemer.

Christ came courageously, knowing full well what He was
about to face.

Christ Came Expectedly

The OT prophet Zechariah told of Israel’s King who would
come righteous and victorious.
What they didn’t understand was that He didn’t come to
conquer Israel’s enemies, He came to conquer sin, death
and the grave!
They knew He was coming, because God made a promise
that He would come. And when God makes a promise, He
keeps that promise!

He was also more than a king, He was the Messiah.
The One who God had promised throughout the whole OT
Many Jews today fail to believe that Jesus is the Messiah
There’s no more reason to wait for another to come.
Jesus fulfilled all the prophecies.
He is the One.
There is no reason to keep waiting for anyone else.

Zechariah mentioned that the Messiah would come
mounted on a donkey.
This was a special donkey that had never before been
ridden. It was the only one worthy to carry the sinless
Christ into the city.

Christ Came Humbly

Most kings enter a city on a horse, with weapons of war.
Horses signify war.
Donkeys signify peace.
Jesus didn’t come to sing His own praises, He came as a
humble servant. Isaiah describes Him as the suffering
servant.
Jesus explained it to His disciples in this way in
Matthew 20:26b-28 “whoever wants to become
great among you must be your servant, and
whoever wants to be first among you must be your
slave: just as the Son of Man did not come to be
served, but to serve , and to give His life – a ransom
for many.”

Jesus didn’t come to Jerusalem looking for praise or
pomp and circumstance. He came for one reason and
that was to fulfill what God called Him to do.

He didn’t come looking for a palace to sit it,
He came to find a place in the hearts of His people.

Praise

Before we close, I’d like to talk for a brief moment about
the praising that happened that first Palm Sunday.

The people praise Jesus because they are excited for Him
to come and conquer their enemies.
They praise Him by shouting Hosanna – which means
save us. They are looking to be saved from their
oppressors.

They cover the donkey and the ground with their cloaks
and waive the palm branches at Him because they think
He is the long awaited king.

But in a few short days, some of the ones who were
praising Him will be shouting; Crucify Him!

APPLICATION

We should definitely praise Jesus as we celebrate this
Palm Sunday.

What if this Palm Sunday we took a different approach.

Praise Him for His Pain – He endured the cross.
He suffered so that we could be forgiven.

Praise Him for His Piercing – He endured the crown of
thorns being pressed into His skull. He endured the nails
which pierced His hands and feet.

Praise Him for His Obedience – He willingly went to
the cross to take our punishment because the Father
asked Him to.

Every bit of what He did was because of His great love for
you and me!

We must remember that it was our sin that caused Him
The pain and piercing.
God knew it would take the obedience of His Son to
pardon us from our sin.

Jesus wept over the city of Jerusalem.
We too should weep over our sin.
It should grieve us just as it grieves Him.