Easter is the ultimate day in the life of a Christian. Our foundation and every belief rests on the resurrection of Jesus. So how did we get there? What were the events that led up to the empty tomb? Do the events leading up to Easter parallel in some ways to the world we are living in today?
Palm Sunday is the Christian holiday celebrated the Sunday before Easter. The day represents Jesus' welcomed entry into Jerusalem and is mentioned in all four gospels. While Palm Sunday seemed to be a celebration and is the start of Holy Week, it represents the first steps closer to the cross for Jesus.
After speaking to a crowd, Jesus headed toward Jerusalem. He sent two disciples ahead to find a donkey.
"Go to the village ahead of you, and as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, which no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here. If anyone asks you, 'why are you untying it?' say, 'The Lord needs it." Luke 19:30-31
His two disciples went ahead and found the colt just as He said. They brought the colt to Jesus, threw their cloaks on it's back and helped Jesus on. As Jesus rode along on the young donkey, onlookers threw their cloaks and palm branches on the ground in front of Jesus as they worshiped Him.
The pharisees did not care for the crowd praising Jesus. They rebuked Him for they did not want someone challenging their authority. As Jesus approached Jerusalem, He wept over the city saying:
"If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace-but now it is hidden from your eyes. The days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment against you and encircle you and hem you in on every side. They will dash you to the ground, you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God's coming to you. Luke 19:42-44
The crowds praised Him for they wanted a king to save them. He was right in front of the people, yet they could not see Him for His real purpose.
He came not as they expected. Not on a high horse like most kings would. But rather a young donkey. This was the first time Jesus was acknowledged as the Messiah just as was foreshadowed (Zecheriah 9:9).
He came not as they wanted. Not as the ruler of the land the people had hoped. But as king of their hearts and a savior for their souls.
Oh, what a difference a few days makes. How quickly people forget what they really need. How quickly they turn when they get what they need, but not necessarily what they want.
Seems history repeats itself. God comes through to deliver, and everyone is thankful. Yet in one short chapter of Psalm 107 the people need saving, cry out to God, thank Him and then forget...four times. Read Psalm 107 and see.
The people in Jerusalem cried out to God, He delivered the Messiah, and everyone cheered. In just a few short days they surely forgot.
Still today we are crying out to God to help us through this chaos. He will bring us the peace we need. When He delivers what we need, will we thank Him? What if He rescues us not in the way we want, but in the way we need? Will we so quickly forget too?