Welcome- Prepare hearts and Worship 100% of the time, His little feet.
I am looking for a couple of people who would want to be available at the end of service to answer questions and meet any body that has questions. If this is something you might want to participate in please let me know.
Call to Worship see Romans 6:1-14
Worship through Song
Good morning again. I am so glad you are here with us this morning. We have been going through Chapter 5 in Ephesians and last week we looked at how a husband is to love his wife. He is to love his wife as Christ loves the Church. He is to care deeply for her and to put her needs before his own. To treat his wife with the care that he treats his own body. So I find it very good that after we teach that husbands are to love their wives as Christ loves the Church that we come to Passion week or Holy week. The week that we take a look at the final week of his earthly ministry his triumphant entry, his death on the cross, and his resurrection over death and his victory over sin and death. All of which comes from his love for the people of the world.
Today we come together on Palm Sunday. This is the Sunday before Easter or Resurrection Sunday. It is the day where we look at triumphant entry of Jesus into Jerusalem. Today we are going to look at the events that lead up to his coming to Jerusalem. For nearly three years Jesus has been traveling around the region teaching and performing miracles. Over the course of his ministry tension has been building little by little and the winter before he is in Jerusalem during the festival of dedication and walking in the temple. The Jews come around him a point blank ask him is he is the Messiah.
24 The Jews surrounded him and asked, “How long are you going to keep us in suspense? If you are the Messiah, tell us plainly.”
And Jesus responds with
25 “I did tell you and you don’t believe,” Jesus answered them. “The works that I do in my Father’s name testify about me. 26 But you don’t believe because you are not of my sheep. 27 My sheep hear my voice, I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all. No one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”
He tells them that they do not hear the Good Shepherds voice and so they don’t follow him. He claims that those that he saves will never perish and that they are protected by the Father. Father God.
The tension between the Jews and Jesus continue to rise and the Jews attempt to stone him. They tried to seize him but he escaped them and went to the other side of the Jordan river. This would be the last time he would be in Jerusalem until his return for the Passover. He continues to teach in Perea and then he gets word that his friend Lazarus has died.
4 When Jesus heard it, he said, “This sickness will not end in death but is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.” 5 Now Jesus loved Martha, her sister, and Lazarus. 6 So when he heard that he was sick, he stayed two more days in the place where he was. 7 Then after that, he said to the disciples, “Let’s go to Judea again.”
The house of Lazarus was only 2 miles from Jerusalem and the tension has not gone away. His disciples question if this is the right course of action. But as Jesus said he is going for the glory of God not for his own safety.
8 “Rabbi,” the disciples told him, “just now the Jews tried to stone you, and you’re going there again?”
The Climatic Miracle
The Climatic Miracle
Jesus travels back to Bethany and to see his friend. As he approaches he meets with Martha
21 Then Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother wouldn’t have died. 22 Yet even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you.” 23 “Your brother will rise again,” Jesus told her. 24 Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.” 25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me, even if he dies, will live. 26 Everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
Martha believes that if Jesus would have been there that her brother would still be alive. That he had the power to heal him. Her faith in Jesus has been challenged. He asks her, even in her grief, does she believe that anyone who believes in Him will not die. Her response tells what she has believed in her heart.
27 “Yes, Lord,” she told him, “I believe you are the Messiah, the Son of God, who comes into the world.”
She calls him Lord, she has submitted to his authority. She calls him Messiah, the long awaited savior of the people. She calls him the Son of God. She believes his claim of his divine nature.
He sends Martha to get Mary who has stayed in the home to grieve. She comes to Jesus and since many Jews knew of Lazarus’ death they were there with her. She came fell at his feet.
32 As soon as Mary came to where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and told him, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother wouldn’t have died!”
She also believes that Jesus had the power to save her from from dying and he responds with
33 When Jesus saw her crying, and the Jews who had come with her crying, he was deeply moved in his spirit and troubled. 34 “Where have you put him?” he asked. “Lord,” they told him, “come and see.”
Jesus comes to the tomb.
38 Then Jesus, deeply moved again, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone was lying against it. 39 “Remove the stone,” Jesus said. Martha, the dead man’s sister, told him, “Lord, there is already a stench because he has been dead four days.” 40 Jesus said to her, “Didn’t I tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?” 41 So they removed the stone. Then Jesus raised his eyes and said, “Father, I thank you that you heard me. 42 I know that you always hear me, but because of the crowd standing here I said this, so that they may believe you sent me.” 43 After he said this, he shouted with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44 The dead man came out bound hand and foot with linen strips and with his face wrapped in a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unwrap him and let him go.”
This miracle is the most public and direct claim that God the Father has sent him. There are plenty of witnesses and this miracle was to demonstrate the Glory of God so that they may believe. He does not claim the Glory for himself but points the people to God.
When the crowd was presented with the work of the Messiah there were two responses. there are always to responses. Faith or belief and rejection and rebellion.
45 Therefore, many of the Jews who came to Mary and saw what he did believed in him. 46 But some of them went to the Pharisees and told them what Jesus had done.
Each of these events continued to build the tension and animosity towards Jesus. The Jewish leaders came together to in a meeting.
47 So the chief priests and the Pharisees convened the Sanhedrin and were saying, “What are we going to do since this man is doing many signs? 48 If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation.”
The religious leaders are worried about their influence and power among the people. They are afraid that the Romans will remove them and the nation of Isreal. They are so hard hearted that they cannot see who Jesus is. During the meeting the high priest makes this statement.
49 One of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, “You know nothing at all! 50 You’re not considering that it is to your advantage that one man should die for the people rather than the whole nation perish.” 51 He did not say this on his own, but being high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the nation, 52 and not for the nation only, but also to unite the scattered children of God. 53 So from that day on they plotted to kill him.
He sees that if they can pin all of the chaos and tension onto Jesus and that if they can have him killed then his death will save the whole nation. Caiaphas had prophesied that Jesus would die for the nation and that he would unite the scattered children of God. And through all of that he was blinded and could not see the end. so they determined in their heart to plot to kill him.
54 Jesus therefore no longer walked openly among the Jews but departed from there to the countryside near the wilderness, to a town called Ephraim, and he stayed there with the disciples.
Jesus retreated to the wilderness until his time has come and that would be the time of passover. Because the Religions leaders had sent word for people to report to them.
55 Now the Jewish Passover was near, and many went up to Jerusalem from the country to purify themselves before the Passover. 56 They were looking for Jesus and asking one another as they stood in the temple, “What do you think? He won’t come to the festival, will he?” 57 The chief priests and the Pharisees had given orders that if anyone knew where he was, he should report it so that they could arrest him.
The Calm Dinner
The Calm Dinner
So Jesus stays away for awhile and then he returns back to Bethany 6 days before Passover and enters the home of Lazarus and had dinner with them.
1 Six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany where Lazarus was, the one Jesus had raised from the dead. 2 So they gave a dinner for him there; Martha was serving them, and Lazarus was one of those reclining at the table with him. 3 Then Mary took a pound of perfume, pure and expensive nard, anointed Jesus’s feet, and wiped his feet with her hair. So the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. 4 Then one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot (who was about to betray him), said, 5 “Why wasn’t this perfume sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?” 6 He didn’t say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief. He was in charge of the money-bag and would steal part of what was put in it. 7 Jesus answered, “Leave her alone; she has kept it for the day of my burial. 8 For you always have the poor with you, but you do not always have me.”
Here we see Mary anoint Jesus with this expensive nard. This perfume would hard to come by and made from spikenard. It would have been perfume that Mary had saved for a long time and would have been purchased for her own burial. As she pours this on Jesus she has recognized and understand where Jesus is going. She knows that his prediction of death will come.
Mary’s response to Jesus is so different to Judas’. Judas has been with Jesus, he has been taught by him, he has seen him perform miracles, and his heart is still closed to him. He is only interested in what he can get from him by being around him.
The Next day Jesus enters the city.
The Triumphant Entry
The Triumphant Entry
12 The next day, when the large crowd that had come to the festival heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, 13 they took palm branches and went out to meet him. They kept shouting: “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord—the King of Israel!” 14 Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it, just as it is written: 15 Do not be afraid, Daughter Zion. Look, your King is coming, sitting on a donkey’s colt. 16 His disciples did not understand these things at first. However, when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things had been written about him and that they had done these things to him. 17 Meanwhile, the crowd, which had been with him when he called Lazarus out of the tomb and raised him from the dead, continued to testify. 18 This is also why the crowd met him, because they heard he had done this sign. 19 Then the Pharisees said to one another, “You see? You’ve accomplished nothing. Look, the world has gone after him!”
The crowd has heard that Jesus has come. The witnesses continue to testify of the raising of Lazarus from the dead. They come and bring palm branches in honor of him and shout Hosanna. Hosanna. This means save us, save us. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord - the King of Isreal. He does not correct them this time. As they are quoting Psalm 118
25 Lord, save us! Lord, please grant us success! 26 He who comes in the name of the Lord is blessed. From the house of the Lord we bless you.
And they also quote Zech 9:9
9 Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion! Shout in triumph, Daughter Jerusalem! Look, your King is coming to you; he is righteous and victorious, humble and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
The king has entered the city. He rides a donkey colt and as he hears the shouts of praise. Jesus will continue to over the next couple of days to predict his death and confound the religious leaders, he will have the last super with the disciples. The last thing that John records before Jesus is betrayed is his prayer for those that will believe in him after his death and resurrection.
John 17:20–26 (CSB)
20 “I pray not only for these, but also for those who believe in me through their word. 21 May they all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us, so that the world may believe you sent me. 22 I have given them the glory you have given me, so that they may be one as we are one. 23 I am in them and you are in me, so that they may be made completely one, that the world may know you have sent me and have loved them as you have loved me. 24 “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, so that they will see my glory, which you have given me because you loved me before the world’s foundation. 25 Righteous Father, the world has not known you. However, I have known you, and they have known that you sent me. 26 I made your name known to them and will continue to make it known, so that the love you have loved me with may be in them and I may be in them.”
In the final months leading up to his entry into Jerusalem. We see each the types of people that interact with the Good News of Jesus.
The is the fickle crowd. This is the large group of people that want to come for the show, for the spectacle. Today we call them fair weather fans. They show up for the show, or to belong to the winning team. To claim victory because they are part of the in group. This group is easily swayed by popular opinion. and moves from one object of affection to another.
This is very easily demonstrated in sports and entertainment. But we also see it in the church today. There are many many people out there that will go to a church because it is big and flashy or new.
They may have a charismatic preacher or have lots going on. But as soon as things loose there newness they will move on to the next place. The new church down the road. As the world influences areas of the church “The Crowd” will go with popular opinion.
The crowd that shouts Hosanna, hosanna, Who claimed Jesus as King of Isreal will in just a few short days scream out crucify him. give us Barabbas. They are not there for Jesus. They are there for themselves. Consumed by what he will give them. They wanted to be saved from Roman oppression and Jesus wanted them to be saved from the waged of death. To be given eternal life. The crowd is there to consume.
We also see the Religious leaders. Men who have dedicated their lives to God. Who have spent countless hours in study and scripture and teaching the truths of the bible. They perform masterfully but their hearts are hard and in darkness.
Unlike the crowd they are committed. Fully commited. Fully committed to the empire that they have created. They love power, influence and authority and they will not let anyone take that away from them.
The Pharisees saw everything that God had done through Jesus and they rejected all of it. They could not and would not hear the voice of the Good Shepherd. This is nothing new in the church today. The Religious Leaders still seek the glory that is ment for the Father the Son and the Holy Spirit. They are gifted and good at what they do but they will compromise in many ways to stay relevant and in control.
There will also be wolves in sheep's clothing. the Judas’ of the world are out there prowling in secrete stealing and hiding in the shadows. They will be shown who they really are either in this life or at the day of Judgement. We hear in the new testament the continued call to be wary and awake.
There is also another group. That is the faithful. The Peters, the Johns, the Marys the Martha's and so on. These are the ones who sit at the feet of Jesus. Willing to follow him where he goes. Even though when their faith is tested they may have doubts and scatter. They will deny him and leave.
All of these people and Jesus came to Jerusalem knowing what the Religions leaders thought, what the crowd was going to do, that Judas would betray him and that the faithful would scatter and yet because of
26 I made your name known to them and will continue to make it known, so that the love you have loved me with may be in them and I may be in them.”
You see I am not trying to belittle other churches. I am not saying we are better than anyone else. I am not trying to convince you that we have the secrete sauce and that we have it all figured out. What I am telling you is that the hearts of men and women are still the same. Sin is the same. The need for a savior is the same.
Jesus came to seek and save the lost. It is my hope that every person here has had that moment where they know that that they can repeat the words of Martha and call Jesus, Lord, Avior and Son of God.
This place is just a building. We do not come here on Sunday to get our ear tickled or our spiritual box checked. We need to come here to gather in the Name of Jesus to walk with each other. To support each other. To have authentic genuine community among the believers and to share the love that Jesus has given us.
To connect people to Christ and One Another.
There is some much that God is doing here. There are men and women working through the sins they struggle with, families being supported in times of need. Prayer among the family. Each week there are more and more people growing in there desire for the word and the desire to be transformed by the word. And none of this would even be possible if Jesus did not enter Jerusalem on Palm Sunday.
Worship through Song
13 Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you believe so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.