I love Jesus riding on that baby donkey to Jerusalem – quite deliberately fulfilling prophecy, an acted parable disclosing himself as the Messiah – the anointed King.
Fear not, daughter of Zion!
Behold, your king is coming,
Sitting on a donkey’s colt! (Zechariah 9:9, John 12:15).
How humble and how kind is our King, allowing this young unridden donkey’s mother to come along too! Thousands of people surging with religious and political expectations could easily have made the donkey freeze in fright, but no carrot or stick was required – just the touch of the master’s hand and the still small voice in his ear kept him on track.
I love the way Jesus shocks
The crowd knew his miracles and had heard his words; they thought they understood him, spreading their garments like a modern day red carpet. An oppressed people, they shouted cries of deliverance, hungry for revolt and waved palm branches as a sign of victory. How shocking that instead of ousting the Romans, Jesus, as our great High Priest, ruthlessly cleansed the temple!
Isn’t that what Christ is doing in his church in these days? My greatest need for deliverance is from sin, not from this pandemic or indeed from these current restrictions. God is chastening us back to the priority of prayer and our relationship with himself, to be a house of prayer for all nations (Mark 11:17), that the poor and needy might come to us for healing, and the children might cry out ‘Hosanna’ ( Matthew 21:14-16).
I love the palm branches
It amazes me that Jesus received and even encouraged praise from a crowd who really understood him so little and who would turn against him 5 days later. As our anointed Prophet, did he see past the fickle crowd to his church triumphant, the multitude from every tribe and nation, waving their palm branches in pure praise before the throne (Revelation 7:10)?
Palm Sunday prayer
Like that donkey, let me feel your hand on my life and hear your small, still voice keeping me on track. Chasten me Lord that I might love you above all else and worship you in spirit and in truth.