Palm Sunday and the Prince of Peace

Palm Sunday is the day we as Christians remember Jesus Christ’s triumphal entry into Jerusalem. Palm Sunday marks the beginning of Passion week; that is the week we meditate on the last days of Jesus life on earth filled with triumph, trial, persecution, crucifixion and glorious resurrection.

Just about 2000 years ago Jesus entered Jerusalem mounting an unridden colt as recorded in Luke 19:28-44 to fulfill the messianic prophecy of Zechariah. “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold your king is coming to you; righteous and having salvation is he; humble and mounted on a donkey, on a calf, the foal of a donkey.” – Zechariah 9:9

On that day the Scripture says people began to rejoice and praise in a loud voice. They blessed the King. They cried “Hosanna,” meaning “Save us now!” I can only imagine the stirring in the hearts of people as Jesus rode from the Mount of Olives, across the Kidron valley and into Jerusalem. The excitement would have been unimaginable. Finally the “King who comes in the name of the Lord” had come as Luke 19:38 recalls.

I wonder why, after the excitement of such a triumphal entry, that Jesus found himself weeping over the city of Jerusalem (Luke 19:41)? Jesus answers the question with this statement. “Would that you, even you had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes.” -Luke 19:42 Is it possible that the people who were excited about the entrance of the Prince of Peace didn’t understand who Jesus was or what kind of peace he came to bring? Most were looking for a king who would deliver the city of peace (Jerusalem) from Roman oppression. Jesus entered as a different kind of King to offer a different kind of peace. Peace with God.

The Bible teaches that all those who have faith in Christ for salvation have found peace with God. “Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” – Romans 5:1 Understanding our original position with God is important. “Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior.” – Colossians 1:21 

Jesus rode into the city of peace (Jerusalem) to bring peace and salvation. This peace was much greater than peace with Rome or world peace, or peace in the middle east, or any other kind of peace. This was and is peace with God. The God whose wrath would crush us because of our sin (Romans 3:23 and 6:23) if it were not for the sinless Messiah that rode into Jerusalem and wept.

This week is a week of remembrance. Remember the triumphal entry this Palm Sunday and remember that he was, “Pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities, upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his wounds we are healed.” -Isaiah 53:5

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