Faith: Regardless of your tradition, Palm Sunday is an opportunity
For some this is a significant Sunday.
Palm fronds distributed to congregants especially children, songs with loud praise and “Hosanna” somewhere in the lyrics.
In some church traditions, Palm Sunday is an integral part of the Lenten season, for others there is a passing mention, and in some evangelical traditions, there may be no mention at all of the observance commemorating Jesus’ Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem to observe the Passover.
The gospels describe the arrival of Jesus riding into the city on a donkey, while the crowds spread their cloaks and palm branches on the street and shouted “Hosanna to the Son of David“ and ”Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord“ to honor him as their long-awaited Messiah and King.
This scene is a fulfillment of the prophecy spoken by the prophet Zechariah hundreds of years earlier. The donkey was a symbol of humility and peace and the cloaks and palm branches laid in the way symbolize the arrival of a dignitary, especially a king.
Palm Sunday is an opportunity to personally recognize Jesus as the King — the Messiah sent from God to redeem His people. We can let this reminder help us to pause and prepare our hearts for identifying with Jesus’ agony in His Passion to do God’s will and His Joy in the Resurrection — the conquering of death.
Many did not recognize Jesus as THE king in the midst of this celebration, they were expecting a conquering king riding in on a strong steed; killing enemies or at least imprisoning them and righting all wrongs — bringing justice and Shalom — life as it should be.
Jesus’ first advent was to be one of peace and righteousness; calling sinners to be born again by receiving Him, in response to God’s wooing and pursuit. His second advent will be as the conquering king bringing this present age to an end and establishing His ultimate reign and ruling authority.
This Sunday, Palm Sunday, regardless of your tradition, you have an opportunity to experience the reality of Jesus’ supremacy — at least in your heart and your life. You can let Jesus reign and rule.
Sadly, many who hailed him as King on that first “Palm Sunday” cried out “crucify” Him less than a week later. May we see Him as He is; King, Messiah, Lord and Savior — Jesus the Christ, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.
I encourage you to attend the church of your choice this Sunday, Palm Sunday, and join with others volitionally bowing the knee and confessing with your mouth that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God and The King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
John 1:10 He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. 11 He came to His own, and those who were His own did not receive Him. 12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.
Pastor Len Browning is and elder and the lead pastor of The Journey at First Baptist, Craig, Colorado. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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