#55 – From the Palm Branches to the Cross

How could Jesus have gone so wrong that in only five days the palm branches and the jubilant “Hosanna to the Son of David” could deteriorate into the vicious shouts of “Crucify Him?” *

The first thing Jesus did after the Triumphal Entry was to cleanse the temple. Maybe not a good PR move!

But what would He say if He stood among us today? Would He “cleanse the temple,” and if He did, how many pointed “Woe to you” statements would we sit still for? Or would He just bless us and say “keep up the good work”?

Do we contaminate ourselves, the temples of the living God, with a love for the world and the things of the world in a way that challenges holiness and prevents our focus on the mission He entrusted to us?

Does our preaching more often appeal to the fleshly side of humanity, and offer a plan to escape hell, or present a serious call to deny ourselves and take up our cross daily (Luke 9:23-26) for Jesus’ sake and the sake of those who need Him?  

Didn’t the crowd and their leaders turn against Jesus when He called them to get serious? Wasn’t it when He challenged their hypocrisy that the shallowness of their professed loyalty was exposed? Read Matt. 21 to 27 to refresh yourself on his teaching after the triumphal entry.

Finally, didn’t the Jews’ breaking point come when Jesus claimed to be their king? (Mt. 27:11) Do we truly honor Him at Easter when we soberly describe the agony of his beatings and crucifixion, and celebrate His subsequent victory which won our salvation – – but don’t submit to Him as a King to whom we are bond-servants? Slaves? Mt. 7:21-23 is scary.

Honestly – – are we as different as we’d like to think we are, from those who had claimed to be His followers in that day?

*Matt. 21:9, Matt. 27:22

Ken Stoltzfus
Kidron, OH USA
April 3, 2021
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  1. Michael Stoltzfus on April 3, 2021 at 6:26 am


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