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Palm Sunday | The Real Christ

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About This Devotional

Today is Palm Sunday, the first day of the week leading up to Easter, also known as Holy Week. Our goal is to help you reflect each day of this important week - both on what happened and why it is important to you today. Each day's devotional will consist of the scripture readings for the day, a video describing the day's events, and a reflection from one of our staff. Watch the video below to learn more, then start the devotional below.


Readings

Jesus Enters Jerusalem - Matt. 21:1–11; Mark 11:1–10; Luke 19:29–44; John 12:12–19
Jesus Predicts His Death - John 12:20–36
Jesus Visits the Temple - Matt. 21:14–17; Mark 11:11

Video

Reflection

Zechariah 9:9-10 

Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion!
  Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem!
Behold, your king is coming to you;
   Righteous and having salvation is he,
humble and mounted on a donkey,
   on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim
   and the war horse from Jerusalem;
and the battle bow shall be cut off,
   and he shall speak peace to the nations;
his rule shall be from sea to sea,
    and from the River to the ends of the earth.

Fulfilling the Scriptures

Palm Sunday is a day when we celebrate another prophetic fulfillment of the coming Messiah. A humble King, a Servant of the people who will bring salvation and establish peace in His new Kingdom. His entrance into Jerusalem points back to Zechariah 9:9-10 and King Solomon’s coronation in 1 Kings 1:28-40. Jesus, the true Son of David, is making a declaration about His identity, that now we can’t miss. I wonder what those who were present that day were thinking? 

It must have been surreal to walk the streets that day and to wonder if this Jesus truly was the One that God had promised. I am sure that, as we considered this morning, each person brought their own perspectives and expectations that colored their view of the scene that unfolded. 

An Imperfect Perspective

The scriptures give us four unique accounts of Jesus’ entry into the city that day, and each offers insight into what the people present were thinking and experiencing. We see that the crowds marvel at Jesus’s miraculous power and praise Him. They love this servant king who heals the sick and raises the dead, but I wonder if they have even an inkling of where He is headed. The Pharisees acknowledge Jesus’s sway with the people, but see it as a threat to their own power. His own disciples rejoiced and praised God, but it wouldn’t be until later after everything was finished, that they would begin to comprehend what Jesus was doing.

Each of them will have their conception of Jesus and hopes for Messiah challenged in the coming days. As we consider our own expectations of Christ and our incomplete perspectives of Him, this week is an opportunity to set our face toward Him, even as He sets His face toward the cross. In the midst of our own busyness, our cluttered mess of perspectives and expectations, we might get distracted by what is happening around Jesus, and forget that there is really only One we are meant to see. Surrounded by the crowds, Jesus stands alone.

The Real Christ 

What I love about Jesus in these passages, is that He has no need to be understood or accepted by the crowds, the Pharisees, or even His own disciples. He isn't limited by their understanding. They will all abandon Him soon enough. Jesus continues walking the path that the Father has prepared for Him and will complete every task given. 

This week, as we study the person and work of Jesus in the last week of His earthly life, I pray that God would remove our small and incomplete ideas of Him, and replace them with a deeper and truer knowledge, and would we be transformed as a result.

 

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