Day 24 - Jesus Arrives in Jerusalem

Video Host: Austin Westlake - Southern Missouri DYD


Big Scripture: John 12:1219 (NLT)

12 The next day, the news that Jesus was on the way to Jerusalem swept through the city. A large crowd of Passover visitors 13 took palm branches and went down the road to meet him. They shouted, “Praise God! Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Hail to the King of Israel!” 14 Jesus found a young donkey and rode on it, fulfilling the prophecy that said: 15 “Don’t be afraid, people of Jerusalem. Look, your King is coming, riding on a donkey’s colt.” 16 His disciples didn’t understand at the time that this was a fulfillment of prophecy. But after Jesus entered into his glory, they remembered what had happened and realized that these things had been written about him. 17 Many in the crowd had seen Jesus call Lazarus from the tomb, raising him from the dead, and they were telling others about it. 18 That was the reason so many went out to meet him—because they had heard about this miraculous sign. 19 Then the Pharisees said to each other, “There’s nothing we can do. Look, everyone has gone after him!”

Big Idea:

In this story, we read about Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem. Many churches remember and celebrate this day on Palm Sunday, the Sunday before Easter. The waving of the palm branches was symbolic of victory over one’s enemies; this crowd saw Jesus as the promised Messiah and hoped He would be the King of Israel. They thought Jesus had come to lead them to victorythey were both right and wrong. Jesus was going to bring deliverance to His people, but He wasn’t the military or political leader they hoped He would be. And their first clue should have been the animal that He rode on into Jerusalem.

A mighty king trying to rise to national power would have entered on a horse, a powerful stallion. Jesus entered on the back of the humble donkeyand not even a full- grown adult donkey! The donkey speaks of humility and servanthood. Jesus’ way to gain power for His people was to lose His. Jesus’ way to bring deliverance to the world was to give His life as a ransom for many. Jesus didn’t come to be served, but to serve (Matthew 20:28).

The crowd was excited because they had heard the story of Lazarus and they were sure Jesus was the One to bring true life to all. If He could raise someone from the dead, what else could He do?  Before this week ended, they saw Jesus lose His life. It wasn’t until later that even Jesus’ closest followers realized that Jesus brought us life by laying His own life down. He is the humble King!

 

Big Questions:

  • Have you ever met a famous person? What were they like? 

  • What did the palm branches symbolize? Why did the people wave them as Jesus entered Jerusalem?

  • In your own words, how was Jesus different than what the crowd was expecting? 

  • What does it mean to be a humble servant? Who in your life can you serve? 

Big Prayer:

God,
Thank You that You entered into this world and into my life. Thank You that You came to set me free and to rule over my life, but You did it by coming to serve and love me. Help me to have Your heart. Protect me from a desire to be seen and give me a desire to serve others. Jesus, thank You for laying Your life down so that I could have full life both now and forever. Thank You for being a humble king. Give me the grace to be humble in all areas of my life. In Jesus’ name, amen.