Monday, April 4, 2022

The Week That Changed the World #1 Triumphal Entry

The Week That Changed the World #1Triumphal Entry Luke 19:29-40

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This will be the start of a sermon series entitled “The Week That Changed The World.” We will begin in Luke 19  and present 4 sermons on the final week of Jesus life, often called the "Passion Week."

The Plan - Luke 19:29-35

And it came to pass, when he was come nigh to Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount called the mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples,  Saying, Go ye into the village over against you; in the which at your entering ye shall find a colt tied, whereon yet never man sat: loose him, and bring him hither. And if any man ask you, Why do ye loose him? thus shall ye say unto him, Because the Lord hath need of him. And they that were sent went their way, and found even as he had said unto them. And as they were loosing the colt, the owners thereof said unto them, Why loose ye the colt? And they said, The Lord hath need of him

Jesus’ Plan

Luke 19 contains the story of the final pilgrimage of Jesus and the Disciples to Jerusalem for the Passover. This is the third Passover together and it will be their last with Jesus.
As they have traveled toward Jerusalem, Jesus has told them the story of Lazarus and the rich man. The “lost” parables of lost sheep, lost coins and a lost son. The Disciples, many that have traveled with Him from Galillee, watched as Jesus healed the ten lepers, taught of the Kingdom of Heaven, and gave parables of how to pray. He rebuked the disciples when they would not let the babies come to him to be blessed. They listened as he foretold his coming death and saw him heal the eyes of Blind Bartimaeus and his friend. Then they watched as Jesus called out to Zacchaeus and stayed in his home that night.

The next day Jesus told the parable of the pounds given to the servants and it ends with a terrible ominous warning.

Then the story of the Triumphal Entry begins. Jesus goes before the disciples and they must have been subdued by the terrible ending of the parable they just heard. But now they will begin to see unfold before them the plan of God for the salvation of the world.
This part of God’s plan is specifically spelled out in Zechariah 9:9 Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.

Only an omniscient God could foresee and plan events hundreds of year into the future. The Triumphal Entry was the last part of God’s plan for the salvation of mankind that would unfold that week. It was the end game part of plan that had been made before time began. A plan that includes all of history from the creation, to the fall, to the calling of Abraham, the Exodus and the conquering of the Holy Land. It accelerates when Jesus is born and reaches its climax when He is crucified and then rises from the grave. It is a plan that continues till this day. A plan that take in all of time and eternity. A plan that is so big it takes in all the people of all nations but is so detailed that even a sparrow doesn't fall but He is aware of it.

God's plan includes numbering the hairs of your head. (Some of us are giving God a break on this part of the plan.) God’s plan reached all the way from the Garden of Eden and then, on this day, it reached right down to this man who owns some donkeys. Jesus had planned with this man for the use of these animal and the man understood that the plan was in play when the Disciples said, “The Lord has need of them.”
Can you imagine, this nameless man was a part of the plan of God for the ages.  And now, that man chose to be an active part of that plan. Giving what was his to the Lord.

God’s Plan And Us

It may seem that this man was unique or special but actually it is only that we read of it during this time that makes it seem so. In truth he was not unique, he was simply willing to let the Lord work in his life and with his possessions.

The Bible says that all of us are part of God’s plan. Ephesians 1: 3-5 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will

God’s plan reached out that day in Luke 19 and it included this man and his donkeys. But you and I must understand that God’s plan is working today and it still extends to all mankind and there will be times when it encompasses and intersects with you and I today in the same way it did with this man that day.

This is what Jeremiah said in 32:17-19  Ah Lord GOD! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee: Thou shewest lovingkindness unto thousands, and recompensest the iniquity of the fathers into the bosom of their children after them: the Great, the Mighty God, the LORD of hosts, is his name,  Great in counsel, and mighty in work: for thine eyes are open upon all the ways of the sons of men: to give every one according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings:

How can we know when we have been touched by God's plan for the ages?
I believe it is in the same way it happened to the man with the donkeys that day. You find yourself confronted with the same statement as he did,  "the Lord has need of these"
It happens first when you are confronted with salvation and the Holy Spirit says, The Lord has need of your most valuable possession, your will and your soul.

It happens when reading you’re the Bible or hearing a sermon about service or sacrifice and you hear the Spirit of God say "I have need of your life."

It happens when you bring you children to church, and you realize the Lord has need of your family.
It happens when hear a missionary speak of the need of the gospel and you realize the Lord has need of your offerings to save souls.

And yet so infinite is the wisdom of God that His plan even has made allowances for you to say no when He deals with you.

If you say no when you are invited to God’s gracious and loving invitation for forgiveness and salvation then His plan still includes you, but now your place is as far from God as any place can be and God has place for those who refuse his love. That place is called Hell, just as Jesus finished the parable before coming to the gates of Jerusalem, “Luke 19:27 But those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before me.

If you say no to the giving of your soul, your service, your family or your finances then know that God's plan includes the emptiness, loss, pain and suffering that will come when one chooses their own way and rejects God's way.

Oh how many would go back to the time when they heard the Lord say “I have need of this” and gladly and freely give to the Lord of creation all that we have. How many look back on ruined lives and wasted souls, broken hopes and destroyed families and wish they would have given them all to God? He would have kept them safe in the vaults of heaven to have for all eternity but instead they are lost forever.

Next, we see how Jesus’ plan touched much more than just one man with some donkeys but would include and entire city.

The Praise - Luke 19:35-38

And they brought him to Jesus: and they cast their garments upon the colt, and they set Jesus thereon. And as he went, they spread their clothes in the way. And when he was come nigh, even now at the descent of the mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen; Saying, Blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord: peace in heaven, and glory in the highest.

People’s Praise

Now the people can unleash their pent up praise for their Christ, their Messiah. For over 3000 years they had looked for, prayed for and hoped for His coming. For all the journey from Galilee they had heard His teaching and saw his miracles and now when they seem him mount up on an unbroken donkey colt then know, they can see, right before their eyes, the Messiah is here!

They know, because of all that He had done, the miracles, the teaching, the authority shown in the Temple but they final sign had just been fulfilled as they came into sight of the walls of Jerusalem. God' s plan had planted it like a trigger in the writing of the prophet Zechariah and they were seeing it take place this very moment.
Zechariah 9:9 Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.
This was one of the Messianic prophecies that almost all the people, from the youngest child to the oldest scribe knew by heart. The Messiah would come meek and lowly, riding on a young donkey with the mother donkey walking beside. Hard to get that part of God’s plan wrong, it was pretty specific. When they saw it they were to do something, they were to “rejoice greatly” and they were to “shout!”
And that is exactly what they did.

The disciple had cast their garments upon the colt and now the people began to spread their cloaks on the ground that he might ride over them. In Matthew 21:8 it says, "And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from the trees, and strawed them in the way."

This was the traditional way of greeting a great king and now their King had come and all Jerusalem, all the world would hear the great rejoicing and shouts of their praise. They shouted “Hosanna,”  and they sang from Psalm 118:26 Blessed be he that cometh in the name of the LORD: we have blessed you out of the house of the LORD.
The Messiah had finally come and praise must come with Him.

I need to add something here. I have often heard that these same people just one week later would turn on Jesus and call out “Crucify Him.” That is wrong, these people had traveled the last few days with Jesus, some had been with him off and on for months. These were mostly Galileans who had been around Jesus. They had just seen the miracles on this last pilgrimage and heard His teaching. These people and the others in this group did not turn on Jesus. It was the crowd of Jews gathered up by the Pharisees that called out Crucify Him. These Jews of the Triumphal Entry were the ones that on the day of Pentecost joined the church when 3000 were added in one day. They never rejected Him, they believed in Him, they wept when He died and they responded when the Spirit moved and they heard He was alive.

Praising Our King

Wouldn’t it have been amazing to be there that day? To see the coming King, to realize all those centuries of praying and hoping were ending in your time, right before you very eyes? What a day that must have been.
Let me assure you, that if you are a child of God, then and even greater day of praise awaits us and the coming of King Jesus. One day, Jesus will come in the clouds to claim this world as His kingdom. One day the trumpet will blow and all the prophesy you had ever read about will come to its fulfillment. And most amazing of all we will see it. We will be a part of it and as much as I might wish I could have seen the Triumphal Entry of Jesus the Messiah that day, it will not compare to the Triumphal Reentry of Jesus the King one coming day.

Until that day, let me challenge you in this, If you are saved, a child of God, then you have already experienced the coming of the King, not through the sky like lightning shining from the east to the west but you He has cut through the sins, the doubts and the fears of your life and entered your heart. And since that is true, then just like the day Jesus rode into Jerusalem, the world should hear your praise.

As they used their hands to pull branches from the trees to lay in front of Jesus, we should be also praise Him with the work of our hands. As they took the cloaks off their backs and placed them at his feet, we should be praising Him with our substance and possessions. As they praised Him with their uplifted shouts, so also we should be praising Him in joyous song.

Someday the Book of Revelation tells us we join a choir that includes all of heaven and earth and we will bow before the Lamb and then we will sing a new song and every tongue shall confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.  And every creature will sing, "Worthy is the Lamb to receive power and honor and glory!"
But we don’t dare wait till then. Praise Him, Praise Him, Praise Him today and every day until we do join that choir.

Illustration: Praise Him, Praise Him

Praise him, praise him! Jesus, our blessed redeemer!
Sing, O earth, his wonderful love proclaim!
Hail him, hail him! Highest archangels in glory!
Strength and honor give to his holy name!
Like a shepherd, Jesus will guard his children.
In his arms he carries them all day long.

3 Praise him, praise him! Jesus, our blessed redeemer!
Heav’nly portals loud with hosannas ring!
Jesus, Savior, reigneth forever and ever!
Crown him, crown him! prophet, and priest, and king!
Christ is coming, over the world victorious.
Pow’r and glory unto the Lord belong. [Refrain]

Refrain: Praise him! Praise him! tell of his excellent greatness.
Praise him! Praise him! ever in  joyful song.

When I was young, I used to think, that Fanny Crosby used to much repetition in that song. Too many times she just said, “praise him.” Now that I’m older and I think of all Jesus is to me, all that He has done since coming into my life and I sing that song and now I think it doesn’t have nearly enough times saying, Praise Him, Praise Him. Praise Him.

There is one other thing that I want to call your attention to from Luke 19. It is the answer Jesus gave to the Pharisees that day who told him to make the people stop. It is a remarkable answer, one found nowhere else and one that could not be applied to anyone else by the Creator of the World.

The Power - Luke 19:39-40

And some of the Pharisees from among the multitude said unto him, Master, rebuke thy disciples. And he answered and said unto them, I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out.

Stone’s Shout

Jesus looked into the cold, bitter, hateful eyes of those who were rejecting him as their Messiah and King. He knew this would happened it why he had told the parable the very morning as they approached the city. It was these Pharisees and their followers who had been given the precious knowledge of God’s word and instead of investing it in the lives of others so that when He came they would rejoice with all those they brought with them, they now called on Him to make the people be quiet, to rebuke them.

What an amazing answer Jesus gave them that morning. He told the Pharisees that even if the people could be quieted, even if they could somehow deny the reality of the joy in their heart. Even if they could like the Pharisees deny the truth, it would do no good for then even the paving stones would shout in praise as the Messiah rode over them that day.

It could be that Jesus was speaking prophetically as well as poetically when He  rebuked the Pharisees. For in only a few days the stones really did cry out, proving that Jesus was the Messiah, King and Creator.

Listen to what Matthew wrote in 27:50-51 Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;

The Bible says, when he was crucified there was an earthquake and darkness for the space of 3 hours and the stones were rent, torn in pieces for the anguish that their creator was dead.
And not only on this dark day did the stones cry out but they would be heard again this time crying out in joy upon His resurrection.

Matthew 28:1-6 In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre. And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it. His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow:  And for fear of him the keepers did shake and became as dead men. And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified. He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.
The stone placed over the grave to silence Him, the stone meant to seal Him away, became the stone that joyously rolled aways, opened the tomb and shouted, “He is risen!”

Stone’s Final Statement

The first times the stones cried out are behind us in history and time, but there is one more time that the stones will play a part in the Coming of Jesus.

Revelation 6:12-17 And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood;  And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind.  And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places.   And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains; And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?
The stones bear testimony once again. This time to those who finally see the terrible wrath of God. They will cry out to the stones and beg,  "Fall on us, hide us from the face of him that sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb.”

The stones that could have shouted at the Triumphal Entry, the stones that did shout in pain at His crucifixion and in joy at His resurrection now are called upon by rebellious man to hide them from the Coming King. But the stones do not move at the pleas of man, but only at the command of their Creator.

Which Statement Of The Stones Do You Hear?

I wonder which testimony of the stones are we hearing today? The silent assent of the King of Glory entering Jerusalem, the cry of agony as He died or the moving of praise to show He is Alive?
God’s plan included a man with a couple of donkeys outside Jerusalem, it included the paving stones and tombstones of Jerusalem and God’s plan includes  you. He has a plan, a plan that will forgive your sin, and  give you eternal life through the shed blood of Jesus Christ. He also has a plan that should you deny His love and mercy, the sacrifice of his only Son, a plan that will bring you to a place where you will experience God’s judgment instead of His love, His wrath instead of His grace. His condemnation instead of His salvation.
In that day none will stand and say, "Your plan didn't include me.” That day, all will see and know how He had planned for them even down to this day, this hour, this moment.

The Rich Man in Hell

The story of the Rich man and Lazarus was told by Jesus on that last pilgrimage.
Luke 16: 27-31 Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father’s house: For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.  Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them. And he said, Nay, Father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent. And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.    

You realize that Jesus is not just talking about the Rich man, but is also talking to us. God’s plan, that included Jesus dying for us and coming forth from the grave, also made sure that “Moses and the prophets”  the scriptures, recorded those things and we could hear it this day, this hour, this moment and respond to God’s plan for the ages, God’s plan for our salvation.   


If I had been in that crowd that morning, and saw Jesus riding into Jerusalem,  what would I have done? Would I have stood on the sidelines thinking how foolish this was?  Would I be watching but not willing to shout out in praise? Or would I be one of those shouting, “Hosanna” and cutting branches from the trees and spreading my coat for the Messiah's journey? Or perhaps could I have even been one in the group that traveled with Jesus, willing to walk through the gates of Jerusalem and face death because I loved Him?

We tell ourselves, if I were there I'd welcome Him. I would even march in with Him, but your life now is probably an indication of what you would have been doing back then. Are you are on the sidelines today? Are you watching but not working?  Are you holding back your possessions not laying them at the Savior's feet?  Are you holding back your life not willing to commit it to the same path that Jesus walked?  Could it even be that this morning you are telling the Holy Spirit to be quiet as He speaks to your heart telling you that this is Jesus ready to enter your heart as Savior and King. Jesus said, "Even the stones would shout."  If even the rocks of creation know Jesus then why wouldn’t I acknowledge Him this morning?

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