and make disciples of all the nations...teaching them to observe
all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to
the end of the age" (Matt. 28:19-20, NASB).
November 10, 2019
1) Christ's Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem (David Padfield)
2) News & Notes)
Christ's Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem
On the Sunday before His death on the cross, Jesus entered the city
of Jerusalem. Great multitudes of people took palm branches and went
out to meet Him, while crying out "Hosanna! 'Blessed is He who comes
in the name of the Lord!' The king of Israel!" (John 12:12-13). In
order to fully understand this passage, we must realize how excited
the crowd was. They had come to Jerusalem for the Passover, and
along the way had heard about Lazarus, whom Jesus had raised from
National feelings were always high during Jewish feast days. On this
occasion the crowds were like dry kindling, ready to blaze up, and
Lazarus was a match. The Jewish rulers had already decided to kill
Lazarus "because on account of him many of the Jews went away and
believed in Jesus" (John 12:11).
"At such a time Jerusalem and the villages round about were crowded.
On one occasion a census was taken of the lambs slain at the
Passover Feast. The number was given as 256,000. There had to be a
minimum of ten people per lamb; and if that estimate is correct it
means that there must have been as many as 2,700,000 people at that
Passover Feast" (William Barclay, Commentary on John, p. 115).
Try to picture in your mind the Jews streaming into Bethany to gaze
at a risen man and the Messiah they had longed for (John 12:9).
As the jubilant crowds welcomed Christ into the city, they waved
palm branches—a symbol of victory and rejoicing. The crowds also
shouted, "Blessed is he who comes in the name of Jehovah," a chant
taken from Psalm 118:26. In that Psalm the phrase, "he that cometh
in the name of Jehovah" meant the worshipper drawing near the
temple. The added words, "King of Israel," diverted the expression
to Jesus. "Hosanna" is from a Hebrew word which means "save we
William Barclay said of this Psalm: "Further, this was
characteristically the conqueror's psalm. To take but one instance,
these very verses were sung and shouted by the Jerusalem crowd when
they welcomed back Simon Maccabaeus after he had conquered Acra and
wrested it from Syrian dominion more than a hundred years before.
There is no doubt that when the people sang this psalm they were
looking on Jesus as God's Anointed One, the Messiah, the Deliverer,
the One who was to come. And there is no doubt that they were
looking on him as the Conqueror. To them it must have been only a
matter of time until the trumpets rang out and call to arms sounded
and the Jewish nation swept to its long delayed victory over Rome
and the world. Jesus approached Jerusalem with the shout of the mob
hailing a conqueror in his ears—and it must have hurt him, for they
were looking in him for that very thing which he refused to be"
(Commentary on John, p. 117).
Earlier in His ministry Jesus had pulled back from the crowds and on
one occasion "when Jesus perceived that they were about to come and
take Him by force to make Him king, He departed again to a mountain
by Himself alone" (John 6:15). He had sought every possible way to
avoid publicity (John 5:13; Mark 3:1-12; Mark 5:35-43; Mark 9:2-9).
Now, Jesus deliberately sets Himself to intensify the excitement of
Jesus chose to ride into Jerusalem on a donkey, which was a
fulfillment of Messianic prophecy. "Rejoice greatly, O daughter of
Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to
you; He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey,
a colt, the foal of a donkey" (Zech. 9:9).
The scene presents an interesting contrast between Jesus and the
Zealots. The Zealots were ready for a hand to hand fight with Rome,
while Jesus chose a slow paced donkey to bear Him into the city.
"With us the ass is lowly and despised; but in the East it was a
noble animal. Jair, the Judge, had thirty sons who rode on asses'
colts (Judges 10:4). Ahithophel rode upon an ass (2 Samuel 17:23).
Mephibosheth, the royal prince, the son of Saul, came to David
riding upon an ass (2 Samuel 19:26). The point is that a king came
riding upon a horse when he was bent on war; he came riding upon an
ass when he was coming in peace. This action of Jesus is a sign that
he was not the warrior figure men dreamed of, but the Prince of
Peace. No one saw it that way at that time, not even the disciples,
who should have known so much better. The minds of all were filled
with a kind of mob hysteria. Here was the one who was to come. But
they looked for the Messiah of their own dreams and their own
wishful thinking; they did not look for the Messiah whom God had
sent. Jesus drew a dramatic picture of what he claimed to be, but
none understood the claim" (William Barclay, Commentary on John, p.
To help us further appreciate our Lord's triumphal entry into
Jerusalem, let us notice how a victorious Roman general would
receive an official "triumph" parade upon his return to Rome. "Only
those were eligible for it who had won a campaign in which 5000 of
the enemy had been slain; the unfortunate commander who had won with
less slaughter received merely an ovation—for him no ox was
sacrificed, but only a sheep (ovis). The procession formed outside
the city, at whose borders the general and his troops were required
to lay down their arms; thence it entered through a triumphal arch
that set a fashion for a thousand monuments. Trumpeters led the
march; after them came towers or floats representing the captured
cities, and pictures showing the exploits of the victors; then
wagons rumbled by, heavy with gold, silver, works of art, and other
spoils. Marcellus' triumph was memorable for the stolen statuary of
Syracuse (212); Scipio Africanus in 207 displayed 14,000 and, in
202, 123,000 pounds of silver taken from Spain and Carthage. Seventy
white oxen followed, walking philosophically to their death; then
the captured chiefs of the enemy; then lictors, harpers, pipers, and
incense-bearers; then, in a flamboyant chariot, the general himself,
wearing a purple toga and a crown of gold, and bearing an ivory
scepter and a laurel branch as emblems of victory and the insignia
of Jove. In the chariot with him might be his children; beside it
rode his relatives; behind them his secretaries and aides. Last came
the soldiers, some carrying the prizes awarded them, every one
wearing a crown; some praising their leaders, others deriding them;
for it was an inviolable tradition that on these brief occasions the
speech of the army should be free and unpunished, to remind the
proud victors of their fallible mortality. The general mounted the
Capitol to the Temple of Jupiter, Juno, and Minerva, laid his loot
at the feet of the gods, presented an animal in sacrifice, and
usually ordered the captive chieftains to be slain as an additional
thank-offering. It was a ceremony well designed to stir military
ambition and reward military effort; for man's vanity yields only to
hunger and love" (Will Durant, Caesar And Christ, pp.
Brother J. W. McGarvey observed: "It has been the custom of all
lands to bestrew in some manner the pathway of those who are thought
worthy of the highest honor. When Lafayette visited our fathers
after the Revolution the roads over which he approached our cities
were strewn with flowers. Thus over flowers Alexander entered
Babylon, and Xerxes crossed the bridge of Hellespont over a
myrtle-strewn pathway. Monier tells of a Persian ruler who in modern
times made his honored progress over a road covered for three miles
with roses. But it is more natural to contrast the entry of Jesus
with the Roman triumphs so popular in that day. The wealth of
conquered kingdoms was expended to insure their magnificence. We
find none of that tinsel and specious glitter in the triumph of
Christ. No hired multitudes applaud him; no gold-braided banners
wave in his honor. There is nothing here but the lusty, honest shout
of the common people, and the swaying of the God-made banners of the
royal palms. The rich in purse, the learned in schoolcraft and the
high in office were, as usual, not there" (The Fourfold Gospel,
The entry of Christ into the city of Jerusalem was not only a
literal fulfillment of prophecy, but it was a demonstration of the
nature of His kingdom (John 18:36). The Prince of Peace entered the
city of David while riding upon a donkey, not upon a horse as if
ready for war.
A few days after His entry into Jerusalem, the tide of public
opinion would turn against Christ. Our Savior knew this would
happen, for on the day of His entry into Jerusalem He said, "And I,
if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to Myself"
(John 12:32). John tells us that Jesus said these words "signifying
by what death He would die" (John 12:33).
Some of the same people who had cut down palm branches to welcome
the Son of God into their city would soon stand in front of Pilate's
judgment hall and cry out for the death of the Lamb of God.
The apostle John records the scene as Pilate presents the innocent
Jesus to a stirred-up Jewish mob. "Now it was the Preparation Day of
the Passover, and about the sixth hour. And he said to the Jews,
'Behold your King!' But they cried out, 'Away with Him, away with
Him! Crucify Him!' Pilate said to them, 'Shall I crucify your King?'
The chief priests answered, 'We have no king but Caesar!' So he
delivered Him to them to be crucified. So they took Jesus and led
Him away" (John 19:14-16).
— Via the website for The church of Christ in Zion, Illinois
News & Notes
Folks to be praying for:
Shirley Davis has been feeling okay, but tired. She
returned home Friday from rehab and will be continuing therapy
treatments with in-home therapists.
Melotine Davis had her surgery last week, and all went
Myrna Jordan has been having a painful time with shingles,
but has gradually been getting better.
Bud Montero will be seeing his other doctor this week
and, hopefully, find out what has been causing his dizzy spells and
As mentioned last week, Rick Cuthbertson's cancer has
diminished by 30%, so far, due to the new cancer treatments!
Also for prayer: the family and friends of Mary Vandevander,
A.J. & Pat Joyner, the Medlocks, Jan Bartlett, Joyce
Rittenhouse, Jim Lively, Barbara Thompson, Rex & Frankie
Hadley, and Brandon Mullis.
WordPress version of this bulletin:
Steps That Lead to Eternal Salvation
1) Hear the gospel, for that is how
faith comes (Rom. 10:17; John 20:30-31).
2) Believe in the deity of Christ (John
8:24; John 3:18).
3) Repent of sins (Luke 13:5; Acts 17:30).
4) Confess faith in Christ (Rom. 10:9-10; Acts
5) Be baptized in water for the remission of
sins (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; 22:16; Rom. 6:3-4; Gal.
3:26-27; 1 Pet. 3:21).
6) Continue in the faith, living for the Lord; for, if
not, salvation can be lost (Heb. 10:36-39; Rev. 2:10; 2
CHURCH OF CHRIST
1402 Tebeau Street, Waycross, GA 31501
Sunday services: 9:00
a.m. (Bible class); 10 a.m. & 5 p.m. (worship)
Wednesday: 7 p.m. (Bible class)
evangelist/editor: Tom Edwards (912) 281-9917
Observer website with pictures in WordPress)
(Older version of Gospel Observer website without
pictures, but back to March 1990)