For the next five Sundays, including yesterday, up through Easter, our Journey 2016 will be focusing on the events in the last days of Jesus' life on earth. Today we Journey to Jerusalem. Text: Luke 19:37-38New Living Translation (NLT)
When he reached the place where the road started down the Mount of Olives, all of his followers began to shout and sing as they walked along, praising God for all the wonderful miracles they had seen. "Blessings on the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven!"
People on the journey to Jerusalem were excited. They were going to the Holy City for the Passover. Many had heard that Jesus would be there, or at least were hoping He would be. They had heard about the miracles he had performed, or perhaps even saw Jesus when He touched the blind man and gave him his sight; or healed the crippled man; or even raised Lazarus from the dead. Some of the people had heard Jesus speak at the Sea of Galilee when He gave His "sermon on the mount". They began to have hope that perhaps Jesus was the promised Messiah, or their new coming King. They came to Jerusalem wondering and asking each other "Who is this Jesus?" There are four answers to this question that we give our attention to today:
1. Jesus is the prophet from Nazareth...a great teacher. However, Jesus wasn't only the messenger, He was the message!
2. Jesus is a great miracle worker. He did do a lot of miracles, but He is still a miracle working God today. His greatest miracle of all is to take a sinner and transform him into a child of God. He heals both the body and the soul.
3. Jesus in the King of Israel. When Jesus approached Jerusalem, people laid palm branches down before him for his donkey to walk on. Palm branches back then were a symbol of a political nation, like our flag is to the United States. Jesus was the King coming to bring peace to their nation, and people honored Him with the palm branches.
4. Jesus is the Lamb of God. Jesus descended into Jerusalem on a Sunday, the one before Passover. People came to Jerusalem on that day to select a lamb for their sacrifice on Passover. It had to be as flawless as possible. Jesus came on selection day as the Lamb who would be sacrificed on the cross for all people, to cover the sins of all. He was the perfect Lamb of God. In Him there were no spots or blemishes, no sin.
We have arrived in Jerusalem. Next week we will journey to the Upper Room.
(This material I am sharing on Journey 2016 is a summary of the sermons our Pastor has been preaching since the first Sunday in January.)