“Rejoice, O people of Zion. Shout in triumph, O people of Jerusalem. Look your king is coming to you. He is righteous and victorious, yet He is humble, riding on a donkey – riding on a donkey’s colt” Zechariah 9:9, NLT
Palm Sunday - “A Gentle Reminder”
One thing is certain in this life. Events have a way of repeating themselves. Solomon said it wisely and succinctly: “History merely repeats itself. It has all been done before. Nothing under the sun is truly new (cf. Ecclesiastes 1:9, NLT).” If people found pessimism in Solomon’s assessment of human affairs, the prophetic oracle of Zechariah was a reminder that the cycle of history can be stopped. The occasion of the prophet Zacharia’s words became the prophetic lens to see and anticipate the triumphant victory of Jesus over sin, death and the cross. There is a backstory behind what we call Palm Sunday. Zechariah lived and ministered during a time after the exile; but before the rebuilding of the Temple had been completed. Israel was surrounded on all sides by tyrannical leaders. These despots held their people in subjection, and each wanted to destroy and rule the land of Judea. This was much like Russia’s tragic and reprehensible attack on Ukraine and its people. Zechariah’s commission was to gently and compassionately let people know that a King-Messiah is coming to bring peace to the land. The people were told to lift their highest praises, and to prepare the way, for the coming King. Hosanna was a high expression of praise, which blesses the King and honors His presence. Unlike the despots who sought to rule by fear and violence, the Christ would come on the young foal of a donkey. The meek animal was in stark contrast to the kings who came on gold-plated chariots and powerful horses. The people, gathered to shout praises to Jesus on that Sunday, held in their hands the palm leaves, which were symbols of true victory and triumph! Like the prophet Zechariah, in these times of social and global chaos, may we rediscover the hope Palm Sunday brings. It is so often the simple and humble acts, that can change us; and our turbulent world.