We are at a very familiar story today. It is Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem. The timing of our study is also pretty appropriate. We are coming up to the celebrated anniversary of that event in three more days. How fitting that we look at it now.
We have looked at this story in both Matthew’s and Mark’s gospel accounts. In Matthew we looked at God’s planning to pull of this orchestrated event EXACTLY as prophesied hundreds of years ago. Our blog is titled “Jesus Entry Into Jerusalem.” In Mark we looked at the faith of those involved in the story. How they took Jesus at His word when He told them to get the donkey. How the owner believed that Jesus needed the donkey and would return it. And how the crowd had faith that Jesus was going to do something amazing once He reached Jerusalem. That blog is titled “A Borrowed Colt.” Feel free to click back over and check them out, if you want to.
Today I want to look at the end of the story. When the Pharisees come to Jesus and tell Him to silence His followers who are praising God and hailing Jesus as the coming King. This is a momentous day for Jesus and for all of Heaven. God made would make sure the whole town would hear about it.
This day signals the final countdown until Jesus ultimate sacrifice. Jesus welcomed this praise. I would go so far as to say He needed it to sustain Him for what was to come. When the crowd cried out “crucify Him” did His mind return to this crowd instead? Did this crowd’s praise carry Him through the jeers at the cross?
The praise wasn’t only for Jesus though. This praise was a signal to the people too. They would never forget this moment. They may have been able to push it to the back of their minds when the other crowd assembled, but this scene remained with each participant and observer for a lifetime. I wonder how much more of an impact actual rocks crying out would have had on the people. That would have been something to see!
Jesus told the Pharisees that confronted Him that if the people were silent then the rocks themselves would cry out in their place. God ordained praise for this day and He was going to make SURE Jesus received that praise. Jesus had come so far in walking the Father’s will out in the world. His job was nearing an end, but now came the toughest part of all. God wanted His Son to know how proud He was of Him. This is how He chose to show it. Before the rocks cried out You drew it from the lips of those closest to Him.
Have you ever felt like you just couldn’t hold something in any longer? You just had to say something, or just had to sing? I have on several occasions. This is how those following Jesus felt that day. Like Jeremiah said, “But if I say, ‘I will not remember Him Or speak anymore in His name,’ Then in my heart it becomes like a burning fire Shut up in my bones; And I am weary of holding it in, And I cannot endure it” (Jeremiah 20:9). They couldn’t help but praise God and praise Jesus. There is no greater joy that giving into this kind of fire!
Father God, thank You for the fire! Thank You for the sustaining praise that Jesus could reflect back on during His most trying moments. Thank You that You weren’t about to let Him go into this final week without that praise. You would have caused the rocks to cry out if the people hadn’t. I’m so glad You didn’t need to though. What would that have said about our world if You couldn’t even find one person that was moved to praise Jesus that day. That would have stung beyond words.
Today Lord I almost didn’t come to You to have our time together. I don’t feel good and my head feels like it is stuffed with cotton. But I felt compelled to come anyway. I knew what the story was for today because I saw the heading yesterday, but still I was reluctant. When I opened my bible app to read I was at the verse about the rocks crying out. I really shouldn’t have been there because that is not where I left off last night. But YOU put me there to encourage me for today’s story. THANK YOU LORD for helping my heart cry out in praise again, even when my body didn’t want to cooperate. You constantly amaze me how You use Your words from so long ago to speak directly into my life to the things I’m dealing with right then and there.