28 After Jesus had said this, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. 29 As he approached Bethphage and Bethany at the hill called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples, saying to them, 30 "Go to the village ahead of you, and as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, which no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here. 31 If anyone asks you, 'Why are you untying it?' say, 'The Lord needs it.' " 32 Those who were sent ahead went and found it just as he had told them. 33 As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, "Why are you untying the colt?" 34 They replied, "The Lord needs it." 35 They brought it to Jesus, threw their cloaks on the colt and put Jesus on it. 36 As he went along, people spread their cloaks on the road. 37 When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen: 38 "Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!" "Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!" 39 Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, "Teacher, rebuke your disciples!" 40 "I tell you," he replied, "if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out."
Thoughts: The procession to Jerusalem began not in Bethany or the Mt. of Olives, but in Jericho 17 miles away from Jerusalem (Lk. 19:1). Jesus had set his face toward going to Jerusalem, and he boldly rode into the city as a king. Jesus had been hiding his kingship up until this time. John records that after he fed the 5,000 they wanted to make him king but he refused. Several times Jesus told those he healed to "not tell anyone" (Lk. 8:56) and refused for the demons to testify to who he was (Lk. 4:41). Now the children cry out, and even the rocks cry out- the hills clap their hands that Jesus, the King has come to Jerusalem. The time for his revelation as king had come, but it would be short-lived.
Yesterday the President of the United States was asked why he was a Christian. He said he did not grow up in a Christian home, but was a Christian by choice, noting that the grace of God seen on the cross met a felt need. I am grateful for his testimony and hope maybe some will stop to think about Christ a bit more because of it. It was said in a backyard in answer to a question, but was proclaimed on the rooftops and on world-wide news (http://www.cnn.com/2010/POLITICS/09/28/obama.tough.question/index.html?hpt=T1). He did a fine job of describing the need for humility and grace. We are all called to give an answer to the reason for the hope inside of us (1 Peter 3:15).
Prayer: Lord, give me grace to proclaim the truth of you as King of kings. When I am asked to take my stand, and give my testimony, give me grace to stand up clearly and boldly for you.
Calvin abridged: Christ shows his divinity in sending the men ahead to get the colt- for he knew ahead of time, and bent the wills of others to his own. The disciples set an example for us in complying with his wish quickly. The evangelist tells us that the people proclaimed him as king. Luke adds the words "peace in heaven and glory in the highest" which were the words of the angels to the shepherds at his birth. It is through Him that people enjoy peace in this world.