The Kingship of Christ-PALM SUNDAY

Luke 19: 28 – 40 & Luke 23

When I say the word ‘King’, what is the picture or idea that comes to mind?

Who can name the last king of England?

When someone commits a crime against a king the only way the crime may be over turned is if the king offers amnesty, forgiveness, or gives the official royal pardon. When the criminal accepts the king’s forgiveness they are to renounce their crime and selfish ways and then pledge their allegiance the king and kingdom law.

The Kingship of Christ

1/ Proclamation of Jesus as King

Before He was born, the angel announced to Mary that He would have a Kingdom (Lk. 1:33). The Wise Men came from the East heralding Him as King of the Jews (Mt. 2:2).

Triumphal Entry of the King

Jesus sent two disciples ahead of Him to find the donkey that Jesus rode. He had told them to go to a certain place and there they would find it. He told them to loosen the donkey and bring it to Him. They acted in obedience and they found it just as Jesus said.

Isn’t it great when we let God make the plans?

They then took Jesus and sat Him upon the donkey and began to head toward Jerusalem. As they came close to the city, Luke tells us that in 19:37-38, ‘When he came near the place where the road goes down Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen: “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!””Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”

Let me tell you something about praise, praise is contagious. As the disciples begin to praise the Lord, others from the city begin to join in as well.

How do you welcome Jesus, how do you welcome the King? And WHY?

Do we welcome Jesus into our lives simply for what He can do for us or do we welcome Him for who He is?

They begin to cry out “Hosanna, hosanna” (John 12: 13). Do you have any idea of what hosanna really means? Hosanna is a transliteration of the Hebrew hosi a na’, which meant “give salvation now”, or “God save us right now.”

You must remember that Jerusalem was at that time, under the Roman government. For a long period of time, the Jews had been governed by Rome. Herod called himself a king, but he was really just a puppet for Rome that oversaw Galilee. Pilate a Roman, was Rome’s representative that oversaw the affairs of Jerusalem. The Jews were a proud people and it was an insult to have a heathen man, from a heathen nation, rule over their affairs. Roman soldiers were noted for their cruelty, they had the right if they were walking and saw one of the Jews, they could force that person to stop whatever they were doing and carry the Roman’s items. The Jews hated having the Romans rule over them.
So in effect, what the crowd was shouting when they shouted out Hosanna, was Jesus, save us now, from the Romans.

The crowd was so much like us, Lord, we want to praise You, but we want You to do things our way.

Isn’t that just like us? We praise God when we think He will do things our way, but what happens when things don’t work out the way we planned?

[Eg: Our testimony of Bega not going to our plan (preference), hard time to praise God.]

2/ King on a Donkey?

I have no idea how many people were there that day, but there must have been thousands upon thousands that begin to praise Jesus as He entered into the city.
One of the Old Testament prophets had foretold of this event.

Zechariah 9:9 ‘Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, Daughter of Jerusalem: See your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’

Here the prophecy foretold that Jerusalem would welcome their King with great rejoicing. Prophecy was being fulfilled before their eyes.

Now notice that Jesus was riding a donkey, just as the prophet had said. One of the customs of the ancient Mid-east, was that, whenever a city was conquered, the victorious king would ride into the city at the head of his troops. The type of animal he chose to ride was extremely important. If he was seated upon a horse, it was a sign that the city would be put to the sword for the king was riding his “warhorse” as a sign of judgment against the conquered people.

However, if the king chose to ride a donkey, the city could breathe a sigh of relief, it meant that the king was coming in peace (you can’t fight a battle on a donkey).

We are now living in a time of grace where we can enter into the peace of God. People may often have an image that God is judging them now but Jesus is sitting on the throne of grace. There will come a time in history when Jesus will sit on the judgement throne but not now.

3/ King on a Horse!

The apostle John was the only person to see both comings of the Messiah. He was there that day when Jesus rode into Jerusalem as Messiah, and God gave him a revelation on the Isle of Patmos, years later, to see the coming of the Messiah the 2nd time. John wrote:
Revelation 19:11 , ‘I saw heaven standing opened, and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God.’

I want you to note the difference, the first time, on a donkey, the second time, on a horse. The first time, He comes in peace, offering a sacrifice for sin, the second time, to judge and rule the nations.

4/ Jesus is a King of Purpose and Power!

The Triumphal Entry started out with just a few disciples, but as I told you earlier, praise is contagious. Luke gives us an insight to what is going on, he said in Luke 19:37, that they begin to praise the Lord for “all the mighty works that they had seen”.

John tells us in verses 17-18, that many of the people who saw Jesus raise Lazarus from the dead were there and they bare record, or testified of it. They were having a praise session with a testimony meeting right in the middle of it.

I believe Jesus was demonstrating His power and purpose, “You have seen what I can do by raising Lazarus, but this week, I’m not here to be just your miracle worker, I’m here to be your Saviour.” “I’m here to do what needs to be done!”

The greatest need wasn’t just to healing or deliverance from Rome, but the greatest need was deliverance from sin and that’s why Jesus came, that was His purpose.

Jesus in that last week, talked and preached strongly on commitment and giving us further understanding of our purpose. This was the week that the rich young ruler came to Jesus. Jesus told him, sell what you have, give it to the poor and follow Me.

John 12:26, ‘Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am my servant also will be. My Father will honour the one who serves me.’

You see, it’s not enough to just praise Him as King, you must follow Him as King.

To follow Him you must trust in what He has done for you!

5/ Jesus gives you a Kings Pardon

Think of those two thieves on the cross in our passage today.

Jesus was crucified between the two thieves. This gave them both equal opportunity and access to the Saviour. Both had read Pilate’s inscription, ‘THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS’.

One thief imitated the mockery of the crowd and religious leaders, but the other thief exercised a measure of faith and trust. He may have reasoned, ‘If this Man is indeed the Christ, and He has a kingdom, and if He has saved others, then he could meet my greatest need which is salvation from sin. I am not ready to die!’

It took courage for the thief to defy the influence of the other thief and mockery of the crowd, and it took faith to trust in a dying King!

As we put our faith in Jesus we have had to take courage as well, the world continues to mock Christ and Christianity. BUT look at the outcome. The man was saved wholly by grace; it was the gift of God (Eph 2: 8-9). He did not deserve it and he could not earn it.

His salvation was personal and secure, guaranteed by the word of Jesus Christ. The thief hoped for some kind of help in the future, but Jesus gave him forgiveness that very day, and he died and went with Jesus to paradise (2 Cor 12: 1 – 4).

We have a King in our midst who is in control. He knows what is best for us and though He was innocent, He suffered and nailed our sins to the Cross. So, I urge you just like this second thief to consider Christ. Jesus gives you a Kings pardon, take it up and follow Him.

How do you become a Christian? Prayer of Salvation

Lord Jesus, for too long I’ve kept you out of my life. I know that I am a sinner and that I cannot save myself. No longer will I ignore your love for me. By faith I gratefully receive your gift of salvation, the King’s pardon. I am ready to trust you as my Saviour and King. Thank you, I believe you are the Son of God who died on the cross for my sins and rose from the dead on the third day. Thank you for bearing my sins and giving me the gift of eternal life. Come into my heart, Lord Jesus, my Saviour King. Amen.

Hosanna to the King of kings!


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