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March 28, 2021 7:00 am
Though I don't know if you can remember back when you were to tell the laconic town you grew up in what I grew up in a town down to Portsmouth, Virginia, was a military town and every year July 4 we have a parade right down Main Street and the bands would turn out the high school bands would march the military units would be there. We have dignitaries arrived and the convertibles did anybody else grow up in a town like that, well, you know that's kind of small town America stuff and small-town Americans, disappearing, and why many of those 30 anymore. But even in our modern world there still some parade thought that is the Rose Bowl parade. There's Macy Thanksgiving parade there's a St. Patrick's Day parade in the parade we have right here in Washington after Desert Storm. They look every body. As the song says, loves a parade will in the Bible this morning were to see a parade we don't know. It is a parade we call it the triumphal entry, but really was a parade of parade that had Jesus Christ at its center and I think around which there some life-changing truth so I want us to look at it together here in Luke chapter 19 and let's begin in verse 28 it says, and after Jesus had said this, he went on ahead, going all to Jerusalem. If you're following Luke's gospel you know that Jesus has been in Jericho and now he leaves Jericho and he heads to Jerusalem for the very last time. In his earthly life that arose between Jericho and Jerusalem is a road it's only about 15 miles long.
It was a Roman road. The Romans built it as a matter fact if you go to Israel today. Part of that road still exist a few of the bridges that they built over big caverns still exist today when the Romans built Road.
The Romans built road and Jesus was walking this Roman road. It went 15 miles in that period of about 15 miles. It went up 3500 feet from Jericho to Jerusalem. So was quiet because I'm always interested at the little cricketers of Jesus that you see that, present him as a 90 pound weakling. You know the ones I'm talking about friends if you think Jesus was a 90 pound weakling you go to Israel. You start Jericho and by foot you walk that road and complete the whole journey in the morning and then you tell me if you think Jesus was a 90 pound weakling. I want to tell you this was a strenuous climb and no 90 pound weakling makes this client. Jesus was a physical specimen as indicated by the his ability to make that climb in just part of a day.
Well, it says in verse 29, and as he approached Paige and Bethany.
Those are two little towns on the road just before you get to Jerusalem at a hill called the Mount of olives, he sent two of his disciples and sent them on an errant now these are two villages, Jesus comes to and then about a mile past Bethany the Mount of olives, crafts, and they are right in front of you and all of its splendor is the city of Jerusalem.
The temple sat right on the wall near where Jesus Christ to the Mount of olives. Those of you been to Jerusalem know exactly what I'm talking about and there and all of its splendor, glistening in the sun.
Jesus would've caught a full vision of the city and the city wall in the temple on the corner of the city wall and when he got there he stopped for a minute and he said my guys, I got little errant. I want you wrong and he said to them, go to the village ahead of you and as you enter it you will find a donkey tied there, which no one is ever written. Untie the donkey and bring it to me. And if anyone asked you why are you untying it. You tell him the Lord needs it.
Those who were sent ahead went and found everything just the way you told him, and as they were untying the donkey, its owners asked them when you go what are donkey and they said little more needs. It and so they brought the donkey to Jesus through their cloaks, their outer garments on that donkey and put Jesus up on it. Now when I say the word donkey for most of us the word donkey does not bring the mind and exalted animal. I mean if you watch Western films, you know that he rose in Western films did not ride. Donkey you know John Wayne never wrote a donkey in his life.
And of course Roy Rogers had trigger thank you very much mean this is a mirror, here folks.
I mean this is basic Americano I and the Lone Ranger had high low silver scrap. Can you imagine Zorro jumping on a donkey. I don't think so. No done work but in the ancient near East. A donkey was not a lonely animal. It was not a meaningless animal. The way it is in our folklore. In fact, when King David proclaimed his son Solomon. The next king of Israel.
The Bible says, first Kings chapter 1 that they went and got David's personal donkey put Solomon on David's donkey and letting through the streets of Jerusalem, proclaiming him as the king they didn't put them on a horse.
They put them on a donkey, Kings Road donkeys and so Jesus gets on this donkey and he begins riding down the Mount of olives towards the city of Jerusalem and it says, and as he went along, people spread their cloaks on the road mantises like Sir Walter Raleigh about 1800 years apart anyway and 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, and they began crying out blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord Jesus in the highest, and glory in the highest Hosanna to the king.
Now why did Jesus do this? Why did he do this I mean is it will.
Lonnie was hard to walk in any need to derive no known address of the right answer. I mean he was going downhill now though this is not why he did this is a woman.
Why would he stop and go to all this trouble to go fetch a donkey wanted, he just finished walking on into the city was already there. Well, there's an answer that. In fact, in Matthew's gospel. You'll need to turn there, but in Matthew chapter 21.
Listen to the answer.
Matthew says and this took place to fulfill what was spoken in the Old Testament to the prophet Zechariah when Zechariah said say to the daughter of Zion. See, your king comes to you, gentle and riding on a donkey by doing this I hope you understand. Jesus was referring back to what the prophet Zechariah had written in the Old Testament, and he was proclaiming himself to be the king of Israel, proclaiming himself to be the fulfillment of Zechariah's prophecy that Israel's king would come riding to her on a donkey know what's really interesting is that this is the only time in the entire New Testament were Jesus permitted people to proclaim his kingly right every other time they tried. He shunned it every other time they wanted to proclaiming Ms. King. He ran away from it. In fact, in John chapter 6 after feeding the 5000 you know with the bread and the fish.
The Bible says that knowing that the people intended to come in, making the king by force, Jesus withdrew from that place alone and went into the Mount. But now, as he approaches Jerusalem for the very last time. In his earthly life. Jesus allowed people to proclaim him as the king for two reasons. Number one to fulfill Old Testament prophecy. Jesus said I came to fulfill the law and he didn't.
And second, to provoke his enemies to action to what he mean by that Jesus knew that he had to die this coming week in Jerusalem. He had to die at the Passover feast which was coming up starting on Thursday night, and Jesus knew that his enemies wanted to wait until after the Passover feast and not start any trouble while all the crowds were in Jerusalem for Passover, but he and his sovereignty knew they needed to be provoked into action. That week and so by doing this he provoked a look at verse 39 and some of the rabbis in the crowd said to Jesus, teacher, rebuke your disciples stop your followers from doing this. Don't you understand what they're doing they are declaring you to be the king of Israel there declaring you to be the Messiah there declaring you to be God in the flesh. This is blasphemy stopped Jesus that I tell you if they were to keep quiet, the stones themselves would cry out.
No I'm sorry I'm not going tell them to be quiet. Why do you think this affected the rabbis you think this made happy campers. I don't think so. As a matter fact in John's Gospel it says right after this, so the rabbis said to one another. See their this is getting us nowhere is backing off and waiting and not dealing in them isn't getting us anywhere. The whole world is going after him. Just look at this parade.
Would you were losing it and it says from that point on they plotted how they were to that.
This was Sunday afternoon, friends Sunday afternoon in five days Jesus will be did in seven days Jesus will be raised from the dead, and in 12 months will be through covering this last seven days. Jesus's life. That's about how long this will take us so will take 12 months to go through seven days, but will have fun and little or a lot, so this is the beginning of the last week of the life of Jesus Christ is a Sunday afternoon he rises from the dead.
The next Sunday. So as a church family. Now, as we study our way through the gospel of Luke were beginning the last week of the earthly life of Jesus Christ. Okay now this is the end of our passage, but it makes us ask the really important question and that question is what somewhat what difference does this make to you and me right here in 20th century America.
Women in Jerusalem.
Most of us never written on a donkey. We really don't have any great desire to write on a donkey were knocking across the Mount of olives on some donkey and were certainly not the fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecy in any sense of what systems they cross well listen friends which really interesting as I said earlier, is this is the only time in the New Testament, Jesus ever presented himself to the world as the king. Certainly, he is the king is the King of Kings and Lord of lords, and he could've presented himself this way and been absolutely valid and with presenting himself. That way, but he never did actually, Jesus presents himself another way throughout all the New Testament. He presents himself over and over and over. Not as king but his servant on both sides of the triumphal entry. I want to show you this on either side of it.
Jesus like bookends to the triumphal entry, Jesus presents himself as a servant and challenges us to make ourselves servants and not king.
Now I want you to go back with me in the Matthew chapter 25 pages 697 if you're using our copy of the Bible first run a look at Jesus, presenting himself as a servant just before the triumphal entry. This is the book in right in front of the triumphal entry.
Matthew chapter 20 verse 20 it says then the mother of Zebedee's sons as Ebony had two sons know their names, James and John right James and John's mom came to Jesus with her sometimes you know she had her two boys. There was, nice and kneeling down she ask a favor of Jesus and Jesus and what you want and she said what I want is for you to grant that one of these two sons of mine sit at your right hand and the other one signature left hand in your kingdom. When you come in your glory. Pretty presumptuous request, but that's what she wanted and if Jesus had granted that I think the next thing is the two boys were scrapped over which one got the right hand instead of the left hand. These were guys who were seeking preeminence. These were guys who were seeking prominence and position and they got there mom somehow they talk your mom into doing the dirty work form and going and asking Jesus for what was really in their heart out of the rest of the disciples respond well, let's look at verse 24 and when the other 10, heard about it, they were indignant at the two brothers. They were really upset and you know why they were really upset. They were really upset that they hadn't thought of using their mom before these other two guys to because I had the exact same desire in their heart for the prominence and the position and Jesus could see the whole group of disciples just coming apart here with fleshly self ambition and so he says to them. He says guys commute by computer. I would huddle by computer. He says verse 25 he called them together and said now you know that the rulers of the Gentiles, they lower the authority they've got over there people. Verse 26, but this is not the way it's to be with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you needs to become your servant, and whoever wants to be first must become slave Jesus.
If you want real spiritual greatness guys.
I'll tell you how to get real spiritual greatness. Don't try to be a king. Don't try to be prominent. Don't try to get position is servant and let me remind you, Jesus didn't say that servant hood leads to greatness. Jesus said servant hood is greatness and then look what he says about himself. He says, verse 28 just as the Son of Man, whose that will that's Jesus Christ. Just as I did not come to be served but to serve and to give my life as a ransom for many. How does Jesus present himself right before the triumphal entry is servant now wants to go right after the triumphal entry and watch the other book in the one on the backend of the triumphal entry and Jesus presents himself the same way John chapter 13 if using our copy of the Bible is page 763 John chapter 13 were a couple days after the triumphal entry.
Jesus is having his last meal with his disciples. We commonly call that the last supper sure da Vinci painted it, but this was happening in real life here and Luke 22 tells us that writing them on the supper they get more nullified about who's the greatest.
Can you imagine this in the middle of the Last Supper because I don't think they knew was the Last Supper had been. They met yet but anyway they were in the middle of the Last Supper and are still fighting about who's the greatest and so as a response to that, John chapter 13 says verse four that after dinner, Jesus got up from the meal he took off his outer clothing wrapped a towel around his waist and after that poured water in a basin and began to wash the disciples feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around it. This was a courtesy in the ancient near East and this time to give people water to wash their feet when they came in your house when they were guests people more open toed sandals.
They wore no socks and they got the mod and the dirt and grime and all the assorted crud off the streets of the city all over their feet and so when they come your house and given some water now usually a person washed his own feet off occasionally.
If it was a very honored guest. You might have want your servants come out and wash their feet for them. But what makes this unusual is that the host the master the morning cell gets down and washes their feet for them. I was in a home a few years ago up in rural Maryland. Some people went to a church with a student foot washing now.
I don't know if you've ever been in a church like that are not in a church like that. But there are churches who still have a foot washing ceremony and it was on a Wednesday night they were getting ready to go and I was, watching as they got ready to go to this foot washing ceremony and the woman went back and took a bath got all cleaned up and then she put perfume all over her feet. The guy cut his toenails and change the socks which for us guys is about the equivalent of put perfume on our feet and soak in. The reason they did that is because what they didn't want to do is go to church and have their friends at church have to wash feet that smell like feet.
Now this is not what's happening here my dear friends, the disciples had no idea this was coming. They had not wash their feet got there toenails put perfume on or anything else. Their feet were bona fide feet that have been in everything.
The roads of ancient near East had to offer and you know in our 20th century spick-and-span America. We can't even imagine the older and the bacteria content there on these people speak. This is why Peter reacted the way he did. He said, Lord, do you know anything you know when I stepped into dating. You know you're not gonna wash these be Jesus and the I am Peter because I need to teach you guys less. What's the lesson will look at verse 12 and when you finish washing their feet.
He put his clothes back on and returned to his place and he said you guys understand what I just did you call me teacher and Lord, and you're right because that's what I am now. If your Lord and teacher, have washed your feet. Then you guys should be willing to have the same humility the same lowliness of mind, the same servant attitude to wash one another's feet that I had to wash your feet is Jesus asking us here to have foot washing ceremonies and churches. I don't think so. I don't think he's interested in a ritual.
I think he's interested in an attitude and attitude that says lowliness of mind, servant hood and humility is what makes greatness in the kingdom of God and this is the book and on the back of the triumphal entry. This is why the Bible says that Jesus always present himself as a servant.
This is the way he lived.
This is the way he acted. Philippians chapter 2 says that he did not consider being God something to be grasped onto but he humbled himself, taking on the form of a servant, and came to earth and was obedient to death on the cross. Why because that's what we needed for eternal life and that's what he was willing to do friends Jesus, said in an accessible way.
Peter and James and John and their mother got out and you would not get on staying up there with Michael and Gabriel and all Angels going on here in dealing with those people, send somebody else, but he did. He said I'll humbled myself. I'll take on the role of servant and because they need me, I'll go down and serve their needs and the most important needy serve was the need to die on the cross so we could have eternal life is what it says my dear friend if you're here and you've never trusted Christ in a real and personal way as your Savior.
If you're thinking that there must be other ways to get eternal life, and get to heaven. Other than simply relying on the blood of Christ shown on the cross. If you're thinking you can work your way there. Earn your way there religiously perform your way there. If you're thinking that you can Sacrament your way there.
If you're thinking that some of the religion will get you there my dear friends, if any of that is true, Jesus Christ was a fool. He was a fool to leave heaven and come down here and live for 30 years as a servant and die. The excruciating death on the cross that he died. If there was any other way to get to heaven, and certainly is God he would've known it in for him to have given all that often come to be your servant. He was a fool I'd like to submit to you. Jesus Christ is not a fool, and that the reason he came is because he knew none of those other ways works.
That's what he says in the Bible they don't work though never get you there. If you're here and you never trusted Christ in a real and personal way.
Trust what he did on the cross.
Plus nothing for you to get you to help. I'd like to suggest to you the day unless you're prepared to say Christ was a fool that you need to jettison all those other things you been reliable and grab a hold Christ because that's why came hope you think about what's appointing this for us Christians will appoint from my point of view is that the reason the triumphal entry stands out as so unusual is because Jesus Christ didn't go around proclaiming himself as a king.
He went around proclaiming himself as a servant, and this is what he says is the way he wants us to live any promises. If we live this way toward us.
Luke chapter 6 verse 38 Jesus said, give, give, give, and I'll get back to you press down running all over.
I'll fill your cup so full, you will know what to do with and give gifts serve people like I did is a long listen I merely love you long and you know your sweet, but you are so out of touch is not even funny I mean in the real world out there, buddy. When you walk out the door in the morning, you got a lock and load.
I mean this is the real world is not church out there out there you go out there and you live like this. You show people a soft underbelly out there and they will got you and eat you for lunch.
I mean, this is great church talk tell what it done work out there in the real world Palmetto. I'd like to respond to things I want to say number one saying this is right except for one thing and that is you left God out of the equation to your right. You go out there and show people soft underbelly and try to live like this and they will try to take you for everything your work, but the problem is that they didn't figure God into the equation because God says I'm bigger than they are on bigger than your boss. I'm bigger than the world system on bigger than the neighbor.
I'm bigger than your husband bigger than your wife and I said if you give.
I will give back to you press down rich and running over and there's nobody on that world and stop me from doing that to worry about.
Trust me, I'll give to you more than your giveaway and the second thing I'd like to say is, the world might say living like this is stupid but would you please look at who the world holds up as its greatest heroes the world holds up as its greatest heroes.
People who live exactly Jesus said the laugh they all are people like George Washington Mahatma Gandhi Winston Churchill Albert Schweitzer Florence Nightingale Mother Teresa of the nurses in Vietnam. Corrie 10 boom.
Abraham Lincoln is not the Rockefellers. It's not that Hitler's is not the Donald Trump can talk and shoved and pushed and gotten ahead and control those people world honors the world honors the people who live the way Jesus Christ said to live see there's a big difference between success washing in silent success got stuck in. Please tell me why of the world understand so well how to live successfully.
The world is so messed up on telling you the Jesus Christ is calling us to a different way of living is calling us to a higher way of living as Christians he's calling us to a way of living that the spirit of God wants to produce inside and through us a way of living that makes us a blessing to all the people way of living that brings the blessing of God on the wall like a way of living that makes our life fulfilling Emerald morning, and satisfying, and it comes not from taking comes from. It comes not from being a king with conveyancer.
I want to tell you about where you go and you know this servants stand out and they stand out and they win your heart. I just got back from Florida and I was down there for five days of my older son Jamie, my oldest son is graduating from high school this year it's real emotional deal for me keeps telling me what you stop in on him like you just don't understand Melanie's visual understand. But anyway it is varsity baseball starts this coming week, and this was once that starts the word on and so I want it one more little trip in with him and we talked about it and decided that they were little scuba dive.
So you want to be certify we took the course up here and we went down to Key West to do our referral dive so I looked around, you know I said I gotta keep the cost down on this.
You know I have some friends at work out some arrangements to stay down there and then I decide what you know how modern do this airfare because I can have a Saturday night stay, because I need to get back to be here this morning so I called around and I discovered just what value shifts. Yes sir value Jack no Saturday night stay. No tickets, no advance reservation 69 box to Miami. This is a Hebrews 3000 Jamie were going value Jack, he goes jet when did they start, fly, and I still worry about it for 69 box will take our chances. This is over is not apply plain and so anyway we got there we get on value jet.
We got our suitcase and we got this dog bag full of all of our equipment we get to Miami we go down to the luggage check-in right and were standing in little things going around around around around around our suitcases come out would just stand there, waiting for the dog bag and waiting for the dog bag and waiting for God bag person would only people standing there with the empty thing going around and around waiting for the God bag and guess what… No equipment attorney Janus it will in this way to start a vacation and he said that you get what you pay for can you say homicide I go to the ticket area and I'm saying to myself, okay, no cool turn of loose testimony now is probably nasty fill out a form on form and probably not put your occupation down so just you know be called now here don't know. So I go to does not go you know this is not good. You know all our equipment in there a lot of its borrowed army were talking hundreds of dollars of equipment that I gotta replace and I'm going off and finally the sweet lady they buzz. I guess they have an emergency button under the counter. They hit with some idols off like that. This woman shows up to serve. Come over here with me, you, disturbing the counter over here, she's in a tell me problems I go through the whole thing with this young gal. She got 2122 she still was not here in the airport.
She said I will find you guys find we will pay 40 don't find it I will find us and maybe somebody stole it. She said nobody stole it it somewhere but I know it somewhere I'm smart enough to know it somewhere. She said, look where you going to so I'm going to Key West you should go rent the car and start driving. She's in every couple hours stop and here's a number you call me and I'll let you know what the status is the one going to be this number is albeit this number till I find your dog back together when you get off. She said I get off when I find your dog better so all I like this. She said I do this all the time.
She said I will not go home today my job today is to find your dog bag you will have it before the end of the day and I will not go home till I find you call me so this woman looked all day for my dog back.
I called her to know… Colbert foreknow… Call her at six and she said yes why I found it. Where is it in Orlando. Great, she said, knowing say what I'm doing. She said it's flying in. I got on another plane on the go down to pick it up myself.
I'm going to personally transferred over to Gulfstream airline that has a flight that comes in Key West at midnight. I'm gonna stand there, lie, make sure they put it on the plane I'm gonna put a special ticket on it and you will have it at midnight tonight in Key West.
So I went to the airport at midnight and guess what, there was the dog back on the right.
This woman supervisor letter because I think this is exceptional service.
That woman spent her entire day.
9 o'clock at night. She still handling my dive back and I look at her and I say I don't know if this woman is a Christian and not but she sure living like one. You see, this is the way Jesus Christ wants us to live.
This is the kind of servant hood for people to Jesus Christ wants us to have and friends will like living like this. I'm sure that woman had things she could've done I'm sure her shift didn't go midnight but friends we find out how much of a servant we really are, by our reaction when someone treats us that way that here McLean Bible church with the greatest need.
We have said we need more parking know is our greatest need. We need more facility space. We need more programs. Many more Bible studies. We need more staff anymore. My note on our greatest greatest need of McLean Bible church is more servants was the greatest need in your family the greatest need in your family is not more money not a new car, not a bigger house, not more furniture. The greatest need in your family is to have people be more servants was the greatest need in the US Senate and Congress a lot.
I think a lot of you but I'm telling you bottom one we need more servants up there was the greatest need in your office more servant hood. You see, my boss deftly needs. I get the soda you was the greatest need on the streets of Washington DC or servant hood and yet we don't want to be servants. We want to be kings.
We want people to wait on us that the natural thing.
Folks, let me just tell you if you want to be a king. We don't have a lot of job openings here for kings, but if you want to be a servant we got plenty of positions available if you want to be a king. You have a tough time finding a spot in the kingdom of God because they've Artie got a kick but if you want to be a servant. The kingdom of God has lots opportunity, I like to challenge you a giver or you take me the world is full of one of the servants of the givers.
Jesus said he rewards man latte the takers don't have a lot of cars in their funeral procession which are you, and if you're not as much of a givers you wish you were. I got news for you. If you're Christian spirit of God can change if you want he can change if you want, you ask, you and you watch what happens. I hope God will take what we talked about change a life with heavenly father, thank you so much. The word of God to our hearts this morning. Use it to change the way we see our lives change the way we see our purpose in this world change the way we see our mission change or sword so that we can be used by you to make a difference in this world changes so that we can enjoy the rich blessing of God upon our life. Make a servants by the spirit of God. All tourist from the inside make a servants. We pray this in Jesus name