On the day we call Palm Sunday, a week before Easter, Jesus wanted a big celebration.
Jesus had his friends find a donkey for him to ride on.
Then he got on and rode the donkey into Jerusalem, while people lined the sides of the road. Some of them made a carpet for him to ride in on, laying down their coats and palm branches on the road.
They sang “Hosanna!” which means “Save us now!” And they sang, “You are blessed! You come in God’s name to help us!” And they waved their palm branches.
It was like a big parade. I suspect that the ones who had the most fun were probably the children. Wouldn’t it be fun to wave palm branches while Jesus rode by? Or to run alongside singing songs to him?
It was such a special celebration that all four Gospels tell the story — Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
Today we are listening to Matthew’s version of the story, and it is a little bit different from all the others.
In Mark, Luke, and John, Jesus rides into town on a donkey.
But in Matthew, Jesus rides into town on TWO donkeys!
To me it sounds a little awkward. How would he sit down?
But Matthew wanted to make a very important point. Matthew remembered something said years and years before by one of the prophets.
Look, your king is coming to you,
humble, and mounted on a donkey,
and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.”
It sounded like the prophet said there were two donkeys. So Matthew told the story with two donkeys.
Matthew wanted to make sure we knew that Jesus is the savior that had been promised by the messengers of God for centuries.
Jesus is not just someone who was wise and good.
Jesus is someone God had been planning and planning for. When we celebrate Jesus on Palm Sunday, we are welcoming someone whom God’s people have been waiting for forever. God finally came in person.
- I wonder if you’ve ever waited and waited, hoping that God would help you.
- I wonder if you’ve ever had a time when the waiting was done, and help finally came.
- I wonder if you’ve ever felt so joyful that you wanted to wave palm branches and sing a song in the streets.
Used with permission. Gary Neal Hansen, Ph.D
Children’s Sermons and bedtime stories – website and blog: https://garynealhansen.com/