Mar25WedJourney To The Cross - Day 3 March 25, 2020
Luke 19:35-40 (ESV)
35 And they brought it to Jesus, and throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. 36 And as he rode along, they spread their cloaks on the road. 37 As he was drawing near—already on the way down the Mount of Olives—the whole multitude of his disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen, 38 saying, “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” 39 And some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples.” 40 He answered, “I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out.”
THE STONES WOULD CRY OUT
A few weeks earlier, Jesus had “set his face towards Jerusalem” (Luke 9:51) and led his disciples away from Galilee and intentionally southward toward Judea. But now the Rabbi’s own feet were in the City of David – dangling from the mount of a borrowed donkey. The crowds which accompanied him saw this as a moment for exuberant celebration.
The common song list for Jewish festivals came from Psalm 113-118. This moment, as one near to the Passover Feast, was no different. They loudly quoted from Psalm 118:26 saying, “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord.” That was enough to make a scene, but their actions spoke volumes as well. Some were taking off their cloaks, and making a “cloth highway” for this miracle-worker. Others, took palm branches and laid these upon the path (Matthew 21:8, John 12:13). The crowd was celebrating Jesus as if he were some kind of military hero who was worthy of their honor and allegiance. The religious leaders were irate!
The very man the Pharisees were plotting to destroy was currently the most celebrated man in Jerusalem. Jesus wasn’t about to silence the crowd. He wasn’t welcoming the praise because his ego needed attention. He didn’t prevent his disciples from adoring him because their praise was misplaced. They celebrated Jesus as was fitting to his authority and rank. The Pharisees could only see a Nazarene. But God the Father would exalt His begotten son with “the name that is above every other name” (Philippians 2:9b) after his journey to the cross was complete. If the streets had been silent on this day, the very stones of the city would have recognized their maker and declared him as King. Praise was necessary.
May our allegiance to Jesus be just as joyfully exuberant as this day was in Jerusalem!