Palm Sunday: Acclaimed Arrival
Sermon Date: April 9th,2017
Readings: Luke 19: 28-44; Zechariah 9: 9-10
Jesus has been teaching his disciples about the nature of his kingdom and his mission, he heads determinedly into Jerusalem. Jesus proposed to ride into Jerusalem in a way that would be an unmistakable claim to be the Messiah, God’s Anointed King. By this time there was a price on Jesus’ head (John 11:57), but he rides in as a king rather than slinking in as an outlaw.
Have you ever been part of a protest march or a celebration march? What was it for? What was is it like?
Questions: (see “Helpful Hints” at the end of this section)
Read Luke 19 verses 28-38:
1. Why do you think Jesus entered Jerusalem in this way?
2. What would it have been like to be a disciple of Jesus’ on this day?
3. Read Zechariah 9:9-10, how do you think these two passages relate? What does this tell us about Jesus?
Read Luke 19 verses 39-44:
4. How do the Pharisees respond to Jesus?
5. What is Jesus’ response to the Pharisees and to Jerusalem?
6. What do Jesus’ words teach us about God’s attitude to the people in Jerusalem? How do we see God in light of this?
7. How does Jesus’ understanding of the situation differ from that of those around him?
8. How do we respond to the fact that Jesus has come to us? What difference does this make for us in Ashtead today?
Here we have seen Jesus’ determination to reach Jerusalem, and his keen awareness of his calling. What do you feel God is calling you to?
Pray for each other in the places where God has called you. Work/home/school etc. You might like to take time to listen to God as you pray for each other. Share any pictures, verses or words that God gives you.
Conclude with a time of sharing and prayer.
Helpful Hints for discussion questions:
1. Jesus owns his identity as Messiah. He has often told people to keep it quiet, (see Luke 9 :21)now he is proclaiming it in the middle of the town.
2. This is an imagination exercise, encourage the group to think through how it would have felt to be part of the crowd on that day. You may find it helpful to imagine different roles, disciples, crowd, Pharisees etc, and to read the passage slowly as people find their role in it.
3. Jesus is enacting this passage from Zechariah. By doing this he declares that he is the one who will bring peace to the nations and will rule from sea to sea.
6. Jesus weeps over Jerusalem. We very rarely see Jesus weeping, (over the death of his friend Lazarus and in prayer before his trail) and here it is a demonstration of his great concern for Jerusalem and her people.
7. Jesus knows the bigger plan, he rides into Jerusalem in triumph knowing that he will soon die. Knowing that this will transform the world. His disciples and the crowd are still hoping that he will free them from Roman rule. Their vision is too small and too self-centred. When they come to understand the disciples will give their lives in proclamation of this good news far better than the overthrow of the Romans.