|Posted by Baltimore Lutheran Campus Ministry on April 14, 2019 at 7:05 AM|
[Jesus] went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem.
When he had come near Bethphage and Bethany, at the place called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of the disciples, saying, ‘Go into the village ahead of you, and as you enter it you will find tied there a colt that has never been ridden. Untie it and bring it here. If anyone asks you, “Why are you untying it?” just say this: “The Lord needs it.” ’ So those who were sent departed and found it as he had told them. As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, ‘Why are you untying the colt?’ They said, ‘The Lord needs it.’ Then they brought it to Jesus; and after throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. As he rode along, people kept spreading their cloaks on the road. As he was now approaching the path down from the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to praise God joyfully with a loud voice for all the deeds of power that they had seen, saying,
‘Blessed is the king
who comes in the name of the Lord!
Peace in heaven,
and glory in the highest heaven!’
Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, ‘Teacher, order your disciples to stop.’ He answered, ‘I tell you, if these were silent, the stones would shout out.’
Today marks the joyful parade that begins Holy Week. The crowds and the disciples are cheering Jesus on as he comes into Jerusalem. He comes in humbly, on a donkey. In the Jewish Scriptures, this was the way the true king comes. So the people were overjoyed that this miracle worker was coming to them. "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!" they shout. Because they trusted that this Jesus was going to change their lives. They were oppressed by the Roman government and they hoped that Jesus would change all this, that he would start a revolution. That he would come through with a mighty hand and clean everything up- everything that's going wrong and everything that hurts their people! And who doesn't want someone like to that in their corner- a superhero to fight for you!
But they can't yet understand that Jesus' way to save us won't be what how want. Powerful force will not be Jesus' weapon to deal with all that's wrong in the world. He won't be knocking out enemies right and left. But for today, they have hope that everything will change. That their world will look different. That God is up to something in Jesus. That their king is coming. And the only way to greet a king is with joy and shouting and with expectation.
If Jesus was walking into our neighborhood right now, how would you welcome him? And what would you hope for and expect him to clean up in your life or in our hurting world right now?