What is Palm Sunday?
Victory Out of Defeat
And the crowds that went before him and that followed him were shouting,“Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest."
A Triumphant Entry
What is Palm Sunday? On Palm Sunday, Jesus entered Jerusalem with an adoring crowd shouting praises and blessings. Some of them thought their conquering hero had finally arrived to help them throw off the chains of the evil Roman empire. So they quoted Scripture by saying Hosanna, “save now!” (Psalm 118:25-26) as an ancient prophecy about the Messiah riding into the city was being fulfilled. (Zechariah 9:9)
It All Went Wrong
Yet the animal he rode was not a tall, powerful war horse, but a humble donkey. And the destiny he rode toward was not to rule an earthly kingdom, but to give up his life. He was to be crowned, not with gold, but with thorns. In a few short days, another crowd would be shouting, not to praise him, but to send him to his death.
The dreams of Jesus’ followers were shattered – and his disciples scattered – when their hero was unjustly tried, mocked, spit upon, cruelly beaten, and then nailed to a cross to die. His friends wondered, how could God let this happen?
All in God’s Plan
Yet it was exactly as the Father had planned it. On the cross, Jesus took on himself the guilt of an entire world’s sin. He was punished so that we would not have to be. When Jesus said, “It is finished,” he didn’t mean that his life was over, but that he had done what he had set out to do. At the moment of his death, the veil in the temple was torn in two (Matthew 27:51), showing that the wall separating God and man was now shattered.
So in what seemed like history’s darkest moment, God was accomplishing the greatest thing ever – the salvation of mankind.
Our Hope Born in Apparent Tragedy
“He made the One who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. “(2 Corinthians 5:21) Just like the original man and woman in the Garden of Eden, the crowds proved they were easily swayed. They were praising Him one day and calling for His crucifixion another. Although they didn’t fully understand, their cry of “save now!” was fulfilled in a way they could have never anticipated: “He came unto His own, and His own people did not receive Him, but to all who did receive Him, He gave them the right to be the children of God, to those who believe on His name.” (John 1:11-12)
Pray this week:
For God to give you the faith to trust that He has everything in your life under His control.
Still have questions about Palm Sunday and Easter?