John 12: 9-19
When the great crowd of the Jews learned that he was there, they came not only because of Jesus but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. So the chief priests planned to put Lazarus to death as well, since it was on account of him that many of the Jews were deserting and were believing in Jesus.
The next day the great crowd that had come to the festival heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem. So they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet him, shouting,
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord—
the King of Israel!’
Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it; as it is written:
‘Do not be afraid, daughter of Zion.
Look, your king is coming,
sitting on a donkey’s colt!’
His disciples did not understand these things at first; but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things had been written of him and had been done to him. So the crowd that had been with him when he called Lazarus out of the tomb and raised him from the dead continued to testify. It was also because they heard that he had performed this sign that the crowd went to meet him. The Pharisees then said to one another, ‘You see, you can do nothing. Look, the world has gone after him!’
It is Monday of Holy Week! We will be walking together as we approach the cross, make our way through Good Friday, and then find ourselves celebrating at the Easter resurrection tomb. Let’s walk together!
Before we walk too far, let’s take a moment to ride with Jesus on the back of a young donkey as he enters into Jerusalem. He is the featured guest (the Grand Marshall) of the triumphant parade. People from all around the region have gathered. They heard about Lazarus and the other miracles of Jesus. Now they want to get close so they can be connected to his ministry.
They offer the familiar gift of palm branches but the great gift is their song…Hosanna! It means ‘save us’ but over time it was simply a strong expression of praise. They wanted to offer a gift of praise.
Today, we praise God with our prayers, our acts of worship, our dedication to the church, and the way we choose to live our lives. For the Christian, all of life is a celebration of praise. Our entire journey carries the spirit of Hosanna!
This is a week that will end with the remembrance of the most powerful event in human history. It will be a time worthy of praise. But before we arrive at the celebration we need to make our way through the cross. Let’s do it as people who are surrounded by the grace of God! Give it your best!