The Savior Enters Jerusalem
Humility and Royalty, we like to contrasting things right? We like both of them. For example, many, many people watched when Prince William was married a few years ago. Remember Princess Diana. I think people liked Princess Diana because she was royal and humble. We like those things. We like strength with humility. We like someone who can save us, but also not act better than us, right? In Science fiction this is Superman, but in reality this is Jesus.
This year is a very important year. This is the year that Superman vs. Batman comes out in theatres. I have been eagerly waiting for this movie. Back in 2013 Superman Man of Steel came out and that was a good movie. I loved it! But I grew up under a different Superman. Actually, if you recall, three years ago I referenced the superman music that was so famous from the superman movies with Christopher Reeve.
Clip from superman II when superman flies and you hear the music and then he says “Zod, you care to step outside?”
I love that clip, that is so awesome! The next few minutes in the movie are great! It is exciting, we know that they are about to be rescued. I see the same idea when Jesus enters Jerusalem.
As I looked at this passage I was trying to think of a different theme, but I kept coming back to what I had talked about before. Four years ago, I preached this passage for Palm Sunday say that Jesus enters Jerusalem and the people are ready for a king. Today, I see the same idea. He enters in humility, but is worshipped. Later, Jesus is humble all the way to the cross.
My theme today is that our Savior Enters Jerusalem
Application: worship Him as Savior
Read Mark 11:1-11:
As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage and Bethany at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two of his disciples, 2 saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and just as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, which no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here. 3 If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you doing this?’ say, ‘The Lord needs it and will send it back here shortly.’”
4 They went and found a colt outside in the street, tied at a doorway. As they untied it, 5 some people standing there asked, “What are you doing, untying that colt?” 6 They answered as Jesus had told them to, and the people let them go.7 When they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks over it, he sat on it.8 Many people spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread branches they had cut in the fields. 9 Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted,
“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”[b]
10 “Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David!”
“Hosanna in the highest heaven!”
11 Jesus entered Jerusalem and went into the temple courts. He looked around at everything, but since it was already late, he went out to Bethany with the Twelve.
- I know this is a familiar story, but try to think about it with fresh eyes.
- We need to try to read the Bible as if you have ever read it before. When this happens we will notice all kinds of new things.
- We notice where Jesus was coming from being Bethphage. That may not mean anything to us, but if we cross reference with the rest of the New Testament it will. It would have meant a lot to them.
- We can notice that in the first few verses Jesus’ disciples obeyed Him and went and got a colt.
- Then we see the parade in the following verses.
- Before we get there, it is important to make note that in the Gospel Mark Jesus’ Divinity is called a “Messianic secret.” Jesus would tell them not to tell anyone. An example of this is Mark 8:29-30. Peter had confessed Jesus as the Messiah and Jesus told him not to tell anyone about this. (Mark 1:43-45 is another example.)
- However, in this case Jesus allows people to worship Him. In this case He allows Himself to be known as King.
- Jesus is the authentic King, He is the True King. When I was twenty years old I was looking for a car. I was at a dealership and my dad showed up. I thought, “This is great, my dad is here and can co-sign.” I did not realize that that was not why he was there. My dad came to the dealership because a few weeks earlier my older brother bought a car at this dealership and traded in his old car. But when my brother traded in his old car he gave the dealership a fake title. Really. What happened was that my brother was making payments on his car to my dad and mom. When my brother turned 21 my dad declared the debt paid and gave him a title, but it wasn’t the real title. The real title was in my dad’s safe. My dad made a simple title on the computer. What is funny in this mess is that the dealership did not figure it out. My dad realized this was the case and brought in the real title.
- There are a lot of fake Messiahs. In fact, there had already been fake Messiahs in Judaism. But Jesus is authentic. There are people out there who promise eternity and all the answers. Just watch politicians. Jesus is Truth and He has the answer to eternity. When He came into Jerusalem the people recognized this.
- In verses 8-11 we find the parade. Jesus now makes His entrance.
- But He is going to enter riding on a donkey. Come on, you and I know that no one of importance rides on a donkey!!! A donkey! Well, to the Jewish people it was quite royal to ride on a donkey. In fact in 1 King 1:33 we see David having his son ride into town on his donkey.
- Now, to the Romans the donkey wouldn’t be anything of royalty. In fact, a few years ago I heard that while Jesus is riding into one end of Jerusalem on a donkey, Pilate of Rome was riding into the other end of Jerusalem on a war horse with soldiers. What a contrast. But Jesus is the real King.
- Now, they put coats on the donkey for Jesus to sit on and then they put coats and leafy or palm branches on the road. Spreading coats under a person was recognition of royalty.
- Now, this happens during Passover and Jewish hopes of a Savior ran high, so Rome, not wanting any trouble, had extra soldiers around.
- People in front and all around Jesus were shouting: “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord; blessed is the coming Kingdom of our father David; Hosanna in the highest!” This comes from Psalm 118:26. Hosanna is Hebrew and means “save us.”
- Someone wrote:
On Palm Sunday, my 5-year-old niece, Stephanie, sat on my lap while we listened to the pastor’s sermon. He described Jesus’ approach to Jerusalem and how the crowds cried, “Hosanna, Hosanna!” At that, Stephanie perked up and began to sing, “Oh, Hosanna, now don’t you cry for me!”
Brenda Fossum, Duluth, MN. Today’s Christian Woman, “Heart to Heart.”
- The people are ready for a Savior. They are worshipping Jesus as King. Now as they shout and worship the Lord this bothered some. It’s not listed in Mark, but John’s Gospel chapter 19:39-40 adds: Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Him, “Teacher, rebuke Your disciples.” But Jesus answered, “I tell you, if these become silent, the stones will cry out!”
- Jesus will be worshipped one way or another. He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
- The people worshipped Him then, are we worshipping Jesus now?
- The Romans weren’t worried and they shouldn’t have been. For less than a week later Jesus would hang on the cross and say, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” (Luke 23:34)
- Jesus, the King comes into Jerusalem, the people worship Him, the people were eager for a Savior.
- A few years ago, okay, maybe like twenty-two years ago, ESPN believed the Vinny Testeverde was the Savior for the Browns. He wasn’t and couldn’t have been. There is One Savior and He is not a sports player.
- Let’s apply this a little more. We must think about the following:
- We must also worship Jesus as King.
- He is your king as well. The Romans missed this, the Jewish elite missed this. They missed that the King and Savior of the world is making His entrance. They missed it, you don’t have to.
- When you leave this place, leave in worship and leave in excitement. Praise God that He did enter Jerusalem on a donkey for if He hadn’t we wouldn’t be saved. He had to come to Jerusalem to die in our place. Worship Jesus as King!
- They were excited about Jesus entering Jerusalem, am I excited about Jesus in my life?
- Think about Jesus’ example. Jesus enters in humility and He goes all the way to the cross in humility. Live this example.
- We must also worship Jesus as King.
Author and educator, Howard Hendricks, sat in a plane that was delayed for take off. After a long wait, the passengers became more and more irritated. Hendricks noticed how gracious one of the flight attendants was as she spoke with them. After the plane finally took off, he told the flight attendant how amazed he was at her poise and self-control, and said he wanted to write a letter of commendation for her to the airline. The stewardess replied that she didn’t work for the airline company, but for Jesus Christ. She said that just before going to work she and her husband prayed together that she would be a good representative of Christ.
Doing it for Christ’s sake adds another dimension to submission. You are submitting not just to your employer or husband or parent, but to the Lord, because of your love and gratitude for him.
Lorne Sanny, “The Right Way to Respond to Authority,” Discipleship Journal (March/April 1982)
Can we humbly bow to Jesus in this way?
Clip from Superman II when Lex Luther and Zod think they beat Superman by making him a human again, but it is Superman playing the trick.
In reality, later during Holy Week they think that they defeat Jesus, by killing Him, but in killing Him we all win.
Jesus, our King, Our Savior, hailed as royalty right now, will humbly go to the cross and Win on our behalf. He did this for us.
Do you know Jesus?
God created us to be with him. (Genesis 1-2)
Our sin separated us from God. (Genesis 3)
Sins cannot be removed by good deeds (Gen 4-Mal 4)
Paying the price for sin, Jesus died and rose again. (Matthew – Luke)
Everyone who trusts in him alone has eternal life. (John – Jude)
Life that’s eternal means we will be with Jesus forever. (Revelation 22:5)