“Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the LORD!’ Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” (Luke 19:38)
As I listened “online” today to Palm Sunday services, it got me to thinking 🤔 about what the people were saying, what was the buzz 🐝 in the crowd as Jesus, who had by now become familiar to many of them.
The Gospel writers tell us that a crowd was gathered, gushing with excitement, and lining the road in hopes of seeing Jesus as He slowly rode into the city,as He was making His way, one step at a time by the beast of burden on which He sat.
Altogether it was quite a different scene then times before for Jesus, on the road before Him lay a sort of carpet, sewn together under colt He was on were fresh , green palm branches, and thick, worn clothing, most likely from the backs of those in the crowd, forming a tapestry of endearment toward their long-awaited Messiah, however not all the people in the crowd were endeared by all this activity, for some of the religious Pharisees, this was a problem.
It wasn’t really the palm branches that were the problem so much as….. what the people were saying.
Luke tells us that as soon as Jesus entered Jerusalem the people began rejoicing and praising God, shouting, “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! (Luke 19:38)
At one point, the crowd got so rambunctious that some of the Pharisees even tried to get Jesus to make the crowd stop. They asked Him to rebuke the people for…….what they’re saying, especially the whole “Blessed is the King” part.
The Pharisees got…… part of it you see, but it would be the crowd that “got it”.
The Pharisees knew this saying very well and that this wasn’t just any phrase. They knew that this kind of welcome was reserved for only one person…Israel’s Messiah, Israel’s Savior.
“Blessed is the King”
This is a phrase found in the Hebrew Scriptures, going back to Psalm 118, a psalm that rejoices in the Lord’s triumph.
By verse 22 of this psalm, the rejected stone has become the “cornerstone” (Psalm 118:22).
These Pharisees knew that this phrase in Psalm 118 would be the launching of the day of salvation (Psalm 118:23–24).
They knew that this day of salvation was the long-anticipated deliverance that Israel thought might never come…..but it will, it does, and Psalm 118:25 captures the hope: “Save us, we pray, O LORD! O LORD, we pray, give us success!”
The Pharisees knew that this salvation would be coming through…..a person, the Messiah of God, the one to be by God to rescue His people.
So when these Pharisees heard this shout, “Blessed is the King” they heard Psalm 118:26:
“Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the LORD!”
Without a doubt, this rather loud and rambling crowd in Jerusalem, was “getting it” taking its cues from Psalm 118, and declaring….. Jesus to be the Messiah.
That’s why the Pharisees commanded Jesus to stop the madness.
‘Are You hearing what they are saying about You? They think 🤔 that You are the fulfillment of Psalm 118, they believe You are…..the Messiah who has come to save us, now get a handle on all this before it gets out of hand, tell them to stop now!’🛑
Jesus doesn’t stop them, though, quite the opposite, He says that if the people weren’t saying it that the rocks themselves would cry out.
The fact of the matter? Of course, Jesus is the Messiah, and He has come to Jerusalem to save His people, just as the Scriptures wrote and according to the crowd, this was a problem for the Pharisees.
Now it wasn’t the salvation part that was the problem with these religious leaders more than the way Jesus would bring their salvation.
They wanted salvation, but their perspective was slightly askew….they wanted the Messiah to march into the city triumphant, on a white stallion befitting a king 🤴 and conquerors, they wanted a king who was ready to do some hard business with Rome.
They wanted to be freedom from Gentile oppression, even if by force, even if by threats and plagues and a split sea, as they recounted so well in their history. They wanted another exodus, one that would once and for all expel the Romans, period.
The sounds of the crowd this Sunday — this Palm Sunday — would later be betrayed by the sounds of their stony hearts. “Blessed is He” would soon become “Crucify Him!”
It wasn’t just the religious Pharisees who. knew what to expect in regards to their promise from God in their deliverance and salvation, this crowd also knew it and at that moment were caught up in the zeal and hope that it was all true, their Messiah has arrived but the next Friday’s events would change their minds.
What the people said, and what the people saw..
We too are awaiting the return of Jesus.((Thessalonians 4:13-17), when the transformation and catching up (rapture) of all Christians, dead or alive, will be meeting Jesus Christ.
It will be unknown to the world of unbelievers at the time of its happening, but is known by those of us who are followers of Jesus Christ.
Then, after a period of seven years of tribulation on earth, Jesus Christ will return to the earth with His church who were raptured, with Him.
(Matthew 24:30, 2 Thessalonians 1:7, 1 Peter 1:13, Revelation 1:7).
At this time Jesus Christ will be victorious over His enemies and will reign on the earth for 1,000 years (the millennium) with His saints, we, His church.
As we enter into this Holy Week, we need to know what the Scriptures are saying and how they relate to our own waiting for the return of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. The times are ripe, for the church to be stripped of its preconceptions based on mixing worldly carnal views versus spiritual Christ centered truthful views, and people around us, in our families, friends, neighborhoods, workplaces are watching us to see if there’s a difference between our hopeful perspective rooted in our faith in Jesus Christ, compared to what they are being given through all the worldly 🌎 secular doom and gloom.
I believe that, “for such a time as this” (Esther 4;14) have we been raised up. No doubt, when these times of Corona virus 🦠 are behind us, our lives as well as the world will never be the same. Our hearts ♥️ are being shaped and revealed to a lost world 🌎 and this is the moment when we can share about the hope and future we possess in Christ Jesus.
It is not the righteous, after all, who Jesus came to save, but sinners. Sinners like us.
Maybe today you are not sure what is going on around your circle of life, maybe you’re uncertain of your future and want the confidence in knowing that if you’re life ended today you’d be forgiven of your sins, and would have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. The Bible teaches us in Romans 10: 8-13 that:
“The Word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.
For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”