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Dr. Jay P. Cook, Pastor

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If God Can Use a Donkey Just Think What He Can Do With Us
Matthew 21:1-11 & Zechariah 9:9-10

Intro
Most of us familiar with the Palm Sunday story and can tell the story.  But are we really familiar with the story – got a little quiz for you:
True or False Quiz?
Palm Sunday celebrates the day Jesus made his triumphal entry into Jerusalem. Test your knowledge of that day’s events, recorded in all four Gospels, with these true or false statements.

False (Matt. 21:6, Mark 11:8, Luke 19:36, John 12:13). None of the four Gospels say the people "waved" branches but that they spread garments and branches in Jesus’ path. Only John mentions palm branches, a tree not native to Jerusalem.

 

True. When Solomon was anointed king, he rode into the city on a mule, to the shouts and praises of the people (1 Kings 1:43-45). Zechariah prophesied the Messiah would arrive the same way "gentle and riding on a donkey" (Zech. 9:9).

False. Conquering kings would ride war horses; the donkey symbolized peace and humility (Zech. 9:9, 10). Jesus’ entry was a stark contrast to the war-like Romans, whose military presence was very visible.

 

False. Jesus rode down the Mount of Olives offering him an excellent view of Jerusalem, which is built on Mount Zion. According to Zechariah 14:4, Jesus will again stand on the Mount of Olives at his second coming

True. The people were boldly declaring that Jesus was their king, an accusation eventually written in condemnation above his cross. It was common in Bible times to spread garments in the path of princes and kings, especially at their coronation (see 2 Kings 9:13).

SOURCE: Copyright © 2000 by the author or Christianity Today International/Christian Reader magazine. March/April 2000, Vol. 38, No. 2, Page 39.
Listen as Libby reads from Zechariah and Matthew
Zechariah 9:9-10 (NIV)
9 Rejoice greatly, O Daughter of Zion! Shout, Daughter of Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey. 10 I will take away the chariots from Ephraim and the war-horses from Jerusalem, and the battle bow will be broken. He will proclaim peace to the nations. His rule will extend from sea to sea and from the River to the ends of the earth.

Matthew 21:1-11 (NIV)
1 As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, 2 saying to them, "Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. 3 If anyone says anything to you, tell him that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away." 4 This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet: 5 "Say to the Daughter of Zion, 'See, your king comes to you, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.'" 6 The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. 7 They brought the donkey and the colt, placed their cloaks on them, and Jesus sat on them. 8 A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9 The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted, "Hosanna to the Son of David!" "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!" "Hosanna in the highest!" 10 When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, "Who is this?" 11 The crowds answered, "This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee."

 

 

 

There are three important things that make this donkey fit for royal service, and they are equally important for us:

A.   The Donkey was chosen a head of time – it was by pre-arrangement  vv. 1-3 As they approached Jerusalem... Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, "Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, tell him that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away."

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CONCLUSION
We have made a big deal about the donkey this morning but in reality donkeys aren’t really great it is just what Christ made of the donkey.  They’re stubborn, they’re smelly, they’re small, not really able to do that much. But Jesus used a donkey in his most triumphant public moment here on earth. He could have chosen a white stallion outfitted for battle as He’s portrayed in the book of revelation. He could have chosen a camel decked out in velvets. But He chose a donkey.

 

 

Please click here for slides to accompany the sermon.