“Triumphal Entry”

The “Triumphal” Entry

Friday, April 21, 2017

“All this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass” (Matthew 21:4,5 KJV).

Do you ever wonder why Jesus Christ rode on a donkey the Sunday before His crucifixion?

In today’s Scripture (cf. Matthew 21:1-11; Mark 11:1-10; Luke 19:28-40; John 12:12-19), Jesus’s crucifixion on Calvary’s cross is just five days away. Leaving Bethany, He travels to Jerusalem (a mile to the northwest). Israel’s believing remnant in Jerusalem is excited to hear that Messiah is returning to “the city of the great King” (Psalm 48:2; Matthew 5:35); in anticipation, the great multitude throws their garments and palm branches on the ground. As Jesus enters the city, they cry out, “Hosanna [“O save!”]: Blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord” (Matthew 21:9; Mark 11:9,10; Luke 19:38; John 12:13; cf. Psalm 118:26).

While often called the “Triumphal Entry,” there really was no victory being celebrated in today’s Scripture—the victory was to come later! What we need to realize is that Jesus Christ was humble (“meek”) here: as a King riding on a donkey into Israel’s capital city, He demonstrated He desired peace with Israel (a fulfillment of Zechariah 9:9). He had not come to destroy her, though He would have been just in doing so; He had come to save her from her sins, her enemies, and her satanic bondage (Matthew 1:21; Mark 2:17; Mark 3:22-30; Luke 1:68-75; Luke 9:55,56; Luke 19:9,10; Acts 3:24-26; et cetera).

Just a few days later, Jesus Christ appeared weak and defeated. He never fought back as the Roman soldiers mercilessly abused Him; He allowed Himself to be crucified on Calvary. It was His meek and lowly coming; now was not the time to pour out His wrath. He resurrected and ascended into heaven as a royal exile. Revelation 19:11 says Jesus Christ will return to Jerusalem on a white horse, a sign of war and wrath (Zechariah 14:1-4)—that will be His true triumphal entry, for He will conquer Satan’s world system forever!

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Is it truly a good deed if done for selfish reasons?

What Is It? (Who Is It?)

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

And when the dew that lay was gone up, behold, upon the face of the wilderness there lay a small round thing, as small as the hoar frost on the ground. And when the children of Israel saw it, they said one to another, It is manna: for they wist not what it was. And Moses said unto them, This is the bread which the LORD hath given you to eat (Exodus 16:14,15 KJV).

What precedent did today’s Scripture set in Israel’s national life?

After complaining about not having potable water in the desert, the Jews behold a miracle of God in Exodus 15:23-26—He provides them with drinking water. In chapter 16, they whine because of hunger. God thus furnishes them with manna and quail in verses 13-15 (today’s Scripture).

The word “manna” is actually derived from a Hebrew word meaning, “What is it?” Notice how our English Bible defines it in today’s Scripture: “It is manna: for they wist not what it was.” Manna was so unlike anything they had ever seen. It was certainly not a natural substance; it supernaturally rained down from Heaven. However, today’s Scripture identifies manna as “bread which the LORD hath given you to eat.” It was like coriander seed, white, and had a taste similar to that of wafers made with honey (Exodus 16:31).

Turning to John chapter 6, we read: “[32] Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. [33] For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world. [34] Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread. [35] And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.”

Did they recognize Jesus as “the bread of life?” No. When He entered Jerusalem riding on the donkey, fulfilling prophecy (Zechariah 9:9), they asked “Who is this?” in Matthew 21:10. “He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew [recognized] him not” (John 1:10). The Bible is amazing, huh?

Clueless

Saturday, February 4, 2017

“And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest. And when he was come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, Who is this? And the multitude said, This is Jesus the prophet of Nazareth of Galilee” (Matthew 21:9-11 KJV).

Whether 2,000 years ago or today—some people are utterly clueless!

A reporter interviewed people on the sidewalks of an American city. While holding portraits of famous United States politicians, he asked passersby if they could identify those faces. These pedestrians were utterly clueless. In complete sincerity, they threw out random names, far from the truth. How comical! Doubtless, sadly, such oblivious people exist in all nations. Strangely, in this world of constant communication (smartphones, email, social media, and so on), some people still fail to stay abreast with current events and prominent characters. This was exactly where Israel was in today’s Scripture.

Indeed, some Jews recognized Jesus as Messiah when He came. As He fulfilled prophecy after prophecy, they became increasingly certain that He was the God-Man their ancestors had expected for many centuries. Yet, most remained in spiritual darkness. While their King rode on a donkey into their capital city, the so-called “triumphal entry,” Jerusalem’s citizens asked, “Who is this?” There are hints of sarcasm or scorn here. “If He is so important, so worthy of such adoration, why is He on a modest, baby donkey? He is no one special!” Friends, sin had so blinded them. They could not even see that Jesus was riding that donkey to fulfill yet another prophecy—Zechariah 9:9. Even today, the average Jewish person still rejects Jesus as Messiah.

The multitude replied, “This is Jesus the prophet of Nazareth of Galilee.” While this was true, they were also lacking spiritual insight. He was not just some “prophet;” He was “the Christ, the Son of the living God” (Matthew 16:16)! (Notice the “clueless” people there in verses 13 and 14.) Friends, there are minor consequences if we fail to recognize key people in our world today. However, let us not fail to recognize the Lord Jesus Christ as God’s Son and the payment for our sins—such ignorance will have eternal consequences!

The “Triumphal” Entry

Sunday, March 20, 2016

“All this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass” (Matthew 21:4,5 KJV).

Do you ever wonder why Jesus Christ rode on a donkey the Sunday before His crucifixion?

In today’s Scripture (cf. Matthew 21:1-11; Mark 11:1-10; Luke 19:28-40; John 12:12-19), Jesus’s crucifixion on Calvary’s cross is just five days away. Leaving Bethany, He travels to Jerusalem (a mile to the northwest). Israel’s believing remnant in Jerusalem is excited to hear that Messiah is returning to “the city of the great King” (Psalm 48:2; Matthew 5:35); in anticipation, the great multitude throws their garments and palm branches on the ground. As Jesus enters the city, they cry out, “Hosanna [“O save!”]: Blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord” (Matthew 21:9; Mark 11:9,10; Luke 19:38; John 12:13; cf. Psalm 118:26).

While often called the “Triumphal Entry,” there really was no victory being celebrated in today’s Scripture—the victory was to come later! What we need to realize is that Jesus Christ was humble (“meek”) here: as a King riding on a donkey into Israel’s capital city, He demonstrated He desired peace with Israel (a fulfillment of Zechariah 9:9). He had not come to destroy her, though He would have been just in doing so; He had come to save her from her sins, her enemies, and her satanic bondage (Matthew 1:21; Mark 2:17; Mark 3:22-30; Luke 1:68-75; Luke 9:55,56; Luke 19:9,10; Acts 3:24-26; et cetera).

Just a few days later, Jesus Christ appeared weak and defeated. He never fought back as the Roman soldiers mercilessly abused Him; He allowed Himself to be crucified on Calvary. It was His meek and lowly coming; now was not the time to pour out His wrath. He resurrected and ascended into heaven as a royal exile. Revelation 19:11 says Jesus Christ will return to Jerusalem on a white horse, a sign of war and wrath (Zechariah 14:1-4)—that will be His true triumphal entry, for He will conquer Satan’s world system forever!

Bible Q&A#245: “What is meant by, ‘Love thy neighbour as thyself?’

Zechariah and Dispensationalism

Thursday, July 23, 2015

“Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass. And I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim, and the horse from Jerusalem, and the battle bow shall be cut off: and he shall speak peace unto the heathen: and his dominion shall be from sea even to sea, and from the river even to the ends of the earth” (Zechariah 9:9,10 KJV).

What can the Prophet Zechariah teach us about dispensational Bible study?

A half-dozen Old Testament passages combine Jesus Christ’s two comings: these prophets saw one coming. In hindsight, however, we see two prophesied comings. Why were two comings not originally apparent? (There were two secret comings hidden between!)

Today’s Scripture describes Messiah coming twice: first, He came meek and lowly, and then He will return in power and glory. These two comings are according to prophecy, “that which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began” (Acts 3:21). The Old Testament prophets were unaware of two additional comings of Jesus Christ to divide the two prophesied comings—one coming to start our Dispensation of Grace (save Saul of Tarsus and start the Body of Christ) and one to end it (save the Body of Christ from enduring the seven-year Tribulation). These are the two comings according to mystery, that “which was kept secret since the world began” but was manifested through Paul’s epistles (Romans 16:25,26).

Today’s Scripture (cf. Matthew 21:1-9) first predicts Jesus Christ riding the donkey into Jerusalem, the “Triumphal Entry” (First Coming). Then, it mentions His glorious return to destroy Israel’s enemies, bring everlasting peace, and establish His earthly kingdom over the Gentiles (Second Coming). Zechariah knew nothing of our Dispensation of Grace and the Body of Christ. The mystery was not only “hid in God” (Ephesians 3:9), but also completely hidden from Israel’s prophets. God kept a secret from Satan—He would use Calvary’s crosswork to form the Body of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:6-8). The Dispensation of Grace (and its two comings) was also withheld from the Old Testament prophets, including Zechariah. Wow!

Stones Whose Praises Would Rock Creation

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

“And he answered and said unto them, I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out” (Luke 19:40 KJV).

Why did our Lord Jesus Christ utter such a strange statement?

It was less than a week before He would die on Calvary’s cross, and He had entered Jerusalem on a donkey’s colt, a perfect fulfillment of a Messianic passage: “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass” (Zechariah 9:9).

Believers in Jesus, those who recognized Him as the fulfillment of hundreds of specific Old Testament prophecies of Messiah, “began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen; saying, Blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord: peace in heaven, and glory in the highest” (Luke 19:37,38). The Bible says, “And some of the Pharisees from among the multitude said unto him, Master, rebuke thy disciples” (verse 39). Today’s Scripture was Jesus’ reply to the Pharisees.

Geologically speaking, rocks are inorganic; they are composed of non-living minerals. Yet, the Creator Himself, Jesus Christ, said that they had the ability to “cry out.” Some may say that the notion of non-living objects “crying out” is preposterous, and the Bible unbeliever is free to feel that way. We may, however, point out that it was outlandish that most Jews—creatures with brains and souls—turned a blind eye to the hundreds of prophecies Jesus fulfilled, specific indications He was their long-promised Messiah, the Son of God.

The Holy Spirit through the Prophet Zechariah urged Israel to rejoice and shout when her Messiah came forth on the donkey, and yet here some Jews discouraged the exhibition of such joy! Had no person praised Jesus on that day of the so-called “Triumphal Entry,” surely other aspects of creation would have honored their Creator. The sounds of their praise would have “rocked creation” indeed! 🙂

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Could you please clarify Ephesians 2:18-22?

The “Triumphal” Entry

Sunday, April 13, 2014

“All this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass” (Matthew 21:4,5 KJV).

Do you ever wonder why Jesus Christ rode on a donkey the Sunday before His crucifixion?

In today’s Scripture (cf. Matthew 21:1-11; Mark 11:1-10; Luke 19:28-40; John 12:12-19), Jesus’s crucifixion on Calvary’s cross is just five days away. Leaving Bethany, He travels to Jerusalem (a mile to the northwest). Israel’s believing remnant in Jerusalem is excited to hear that Messiah is returning to “the city of the great King” (Psalm 48:2; Matthew 5:35); in anticipation, the great multitude throws their garments and palm branches on the ground. As Jesus enters the city, they cry out, “Hosanna [“O save!”]: Blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord” (Matthew 21:9; Mark 11:9,10; Luke 19:38; John 12:13; cf. Psalm 118:26).

While often called the “Triumphal Entry,” there really was no victory being celebrated in today’s Scripture—the victory was to come later! What we need to realize is that Jesus Christ was humble (“meek”) here: as a King riding on a donkey into Israel’s capital city, He demonstrated He desired peace with Israel (a fulfillment of Zechariah 9:9). He had not come to destroy her, though He would have been just in doing so; He had come to save her from her sins, her enemies, and her satanic bondage (Matthew 1:21; Mark 2:17; Mark 3:22-30; Luke 1:68-75; Luke 9:55,56; Luke 19:9,10; Acts 3:24-26; et cetera).

Just a few days later, Jesus Christ appeared weak and defeated. He never fought back as the Roman soldiers mercilessly abused Him; He allowed Himself to be crucified on Calvary. It was His meek and lowly coming; now was not the time to pour out His wrath. He resurrected and ascended into heaven as a royal exile. Revelation 19:11 says Jesus Christ will return to Jerusalem on a white horse, a sign of war and wrath (Zechariah 14:1-4)—that will be His true triumphal entry, for He will conquer Satan’s world system forever!