Devotion and Prayer for Week of April 1, 2012

Meditation for the Week of April 1, 2012

“Hosanna, Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” (Mark 11:9)

 Any of you who have ever been in church on Palm Sunday have heard these words read as a part of the Palm Sunday procession.  The words are used to pronounce Jesus as the blessed one who is coming in the name of the Lord.

It is an interesting procession, this one 2000 years ago.  For while the words and some of the actions seem to hail Jesus as a king, other things don’t.  The words are a cheer of recognition of one who comes as the next verse says, “Blessed is the coming kingdom of Our Father, David, Hosanna in the Highest.” (vs.10) Clearly the people are welcoming Jesus as the successor of the greatest King of Israel, King David.  It was promised that a descendant of David would be the king of Israel and Jesus through his earthly parent is of the line and house of David.

Secondly, the people are not only cheering Jesus, but they are throwing their cloaks and robes on the pathway along with cutting palm branches down and throwing them on the road.  All of which is intended to make for a smoother journey into Jerusalem.

What doesn’t match is that Jesus instead of riding in on a kingly steed, a horse, Jesus is riding in on a young donkey.  This is not the animal one would expect the heir to King David’s throne to be riding.  Rather Jesus is riding into Jerusalem on a beast that any commoner or merchant might be using to come into the city.  This sets Jesus apart from earthly kings and helps point us to the simple fact that his kingdom is not of this world.

As we progress through the coming week, known in the church as Holy Week, we will see Jesus do many things that befuddle and astonish the gathered crowds and religious leaders.  He will clear out the temple of moneychangers and merchants claiming God’s house should be a place of prayer.  Then he will teach and heal many sick people.  But even more surprisingly he will wash his disciples’ feet, allow himself to be arrested, stand trial on false charges and make no defense of himself.  Finally he will die on a cross, not at all the actions one would expect of a king!

The promise is that in the coming days there will be one more surprise that will show Jesus to be a king!  And not just any king, the king in the manner of King David, in fact he will be greater, he will be the king of Heaven and Earth who has promised eternal life to all who believe in him as Lord and Savior!

 

Our Weekly Prayer

Lord Jesus Christ, you are a king, you are my king.  May you strengthen me in my faith to believe that you have done everything necessary for my salvation.  O Lord help me to think on the various events of this holy week, reminding me of all you said and did that would provide for me the forgiveness of my sins and the promise of eternal life with you.  May my prayer be filled with exclamations of “Hosanna, blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” Amen