September 27: A Divine Disclosure (Matthew 21:1-11)
This Sunday Josh Herring will continue teaching a series on church history at 9:00am in the youth room, focusing on the roots of the Reformation and how theology develops over time. Ray Rutledge will be in the Adult 1 classroom continuing through The Gospel Project.
Now when they drew near to Jerusalem and came to Bethphage, to the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go into the village in front of you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, you shall say, ‘The Lord needs them,’ and he will send them at once.” This took place to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet, saying,
“Say to the daughter of Zion,
‘Behold, your king is coming to you,
humble, and mounted on a donkey,
on a colt, the foal of a beast of burden.’”
The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them. They brought the donkey and the colt and put on them their cloaks, and he sat on them. Most of the crowd spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. And the crowds that went before him and that followed him were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” And when he entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred up, saying, “Who is this?” And the crowds said, “This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth of Galilee.” (ESV)
We are returning to Matthew for the last section, his final week of ministry. Remember that the gospels are not biographies in the normal sense of covering a person’s entire life but focus on the identity and work of Jesus. Thus it is no surprise that more than 25% of this gospel will focus on his last week in ministry, where he enters Jerusalem, gives some final teaching and then suffers, dies and is raised. This section is the culmination of God's redemptive plan promised back in Genesis 3:15.
We will begin in chapter 21, where Jesus enters into Jerusalem, no longer masking that he is the Messiah, but declaring it openly and gloriously. Unlike our tickertape parades or the coronation marches of other kingdoms, Jesus enters according to the promise of Zechariah: humbly riding on a donkey, and yet he has come to save. Consider the responses of the crowd and how you have perceived Jesus' mission. Reflect on Jesus' manner and purpose as revealed in this passage.
Review and Apply
1. What was Jesus' purpose in walking according to the promise of Zechariah?
2. Looking at the response of the people, how did they perceive Jesus?
3. What parallels can you see today in your life?
4. How does this passage lead you to greater worship of Jesus?
5. How does Jesus' behavior in the temple and among the children reveal more about Jesus as King?
6. What is the relationship of your worship and your affections?
What needs to change for you to follow Jesus as your king?
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