Welcome To Behold Your King! A Message For Palm Sunday John 12:12-16; Zechariah 9:9 Robert L. Watt April 14, 2019 Behold Your King! John 12:12-16 (NKJV) 12
The next day a great multitude that had come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, 13 took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him, and cried out: Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD! The King of Israel! 14 Then Jesus, when He had found a young donkey, sat on it; as it is written:
Behold Your King! John 12:12-16 (NKJV) (cont.) 15 Fear not, daughter of Zion; Behold, your King is coming, Sitting on a donkeys colt. 16 His disciples did not understand these things at first; but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things were written
about Him and that they had done these things to Him. Behold Your King! Introduction: Today is Palm Sunday, one week before Easter Sunday. Events at this time of the year are probably the most important of the Christian calendar, so lets review them briefly for context. (See also the handout.) Sunday (Palm Sunday): Our lesson today. Monday: Fig tree cursed; temple cleansed of money
changers; return to Bethany. Tuesday: Day of controversy (Jerusalem AM); taught in parables (Mount of Olives PM); return to Bethany. Wednesday: Day of rest at Bethany for Jesus; Judas prepares to betray Jesus. Behold Your King! Introduction: (cont.) Thursday: Passover celebrated; upper room teaching; agony in Garden of Gethsemane; betrayal by Judas; 3 illegal Jewish trials at night; Peter denies Jesus 3 times.
Friday: 3 Roman trials in the morning; sentenced to death by Pilate; mocked by the soldiers; crucifixion and darkness between noon and 3PM; burial in garden tomb by Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus; preparation of the burial spices by the women. Saturday: Sabbath; Jesus rests in garden tomb; Roman guards seal tomb. Sunday (Easter): Resurrection of Jesus and appearances to Mary Magdalene and the other disciples. Behold Your King!
Body of Lesson: The context of Johns account of the triumphal entry of the King into Jerusalem (John 12:12-16) comes from v.12 where it mentions the next day. The previous night Jesus had supper in Bethany at the home of Simon the Leper (probably previously cured by Jesus). Lazarus was there (who Jesus previously raised from the dead, John 11:1-44) along with his sisters Martha who served and Mary who anointed His feet with costly oil of spikenard (see John 12:1-11). More details in a future messagestay tuned!
Behold Your King! Body of Lesson: (cont.) Jesus made Bethany His home and slept there at least Saturday through Wednesday nights. He commuted to Jerusalem during the days of Sunday through Tuesday, which was 2 miles from Bethany, following the road around the northern side of the Mount of Olives, and passing through the town of Bethphage, about 1 mile away (see the map).
Behold Your King! Behold Your King! Body of Lesson: (cont.) Jesus made Bethany His home and slept there at least Saturday through Wednesday nights. He commuted to Jerusalem during the days of Sunday through Tuesday, which was 2 miles from Bethany, following the road around the northern side of the Mount of Olives, and passing through the town of Bethphage, about 1 mile away (see the map).
He rested at Bethany Wednesday, knowing all that awaited Him in Jerusalem the next two momentous days. Behold Your King! Body of Lesson: (cont.) I chose John as my text, even though Jesus triumphal Palm Sunday entry is also mentioned in all three of the other synoptic Gospels (Matthew 21:1-9; Mark 11:1-10; Luke 19:29-38), since John alone specifically mentions that branches of the palm tree were used. For the other facts of the story I will attempt to create a composite
using details from all four accounts. We will focus on 4 aspects of Jesus triumphal entry into Jerusalem on that first Palm Sunday: Behold Your King! 1. Prophesy Zechariah prophesied about this (Zechariah 9:9), no doubt the reason that all 4 Gospel writers mention this as being specifically fulfilled.
Behold Your King! Zechariah 9:9 (NKJV) Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, Lowly and riding on a donkey, [even] A colt, the foal of a donkey. Behold Your King!
1. Prophesy Zechariah prophesied about this (Zechariah 9:9), no doubt the reason that all 4 Gospel writers mention this as being specifically fulfilled. For centuries the Jewish people were anticipating the arrival of their Messiah, their King, who would save them from the oppression of the Romans who had conquered their Promised Land. Now in fulfillment of Zechariahs prophesy, Jesus came triumphantly into Jerusalem. But He didnt come as they expectedHe was coming to die and bring salvation to the
whole world. Fulfilled Daniels prophesyend of 69th week (Daniel 9:25). Behold Your King! Behold Your King! 2. Preparations
Early Sunday morning, Jesus and his disciples left Bethany to go to Jerusalem. When they approached Bethphage about a mile from Jerusalem, Jesus sent two of his disciples ahead to make preparations to fulfill Zechariahs prophesy. Until now Jesus had never allowed people to recognize Him as their Messiah and King. Now if He had tried to silence them, even the stones would cry out (Luke 19:40)! This was day 173,880 or the last day of Daniels 69th week
of yearsthe day that the Messiah must be presented! Behold Your King! Behold Your King! 2. Preparations Early Sunday morning, Jesus and his disciples left Bethany
to go to Jerusalem. When they approached Bethphage about a mile from Jerusalem, Jesus sent two of his disciples ahead to make preparations to fulfill Zechariahs prophesy. He also fulfilled Daniels prophesy. They brought the donkey and her colt to Jesus. They put their clothes on them and He sat on them. The multitude spread their clothes on the road with branches from the palm tree as He rode into Jerusalem. They cried out, Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD! Hosanna in the highest! (See Matthew 21:1-11)
Behold Your King! Matthew 21:1-11 (NKJV) Now when they drew near Jerusalem, and came to Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, 2 saying to them, Go into the village opposite you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her. Loose them and bring them to Me. 3 And if anyone says anything to you, you shall say, The Lord has need of them, and immediately he will send them. 4
All this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying: 5 Tell the daughter of Zion, Behold, your King is coming to you, Lowly, and sitting on a donkey, A colt, the foal of a donkey. 1 Behold Your King! Matthew 21:1-11 (NKJV) (cont.)
So the disciples went and did as Jesus commanded them. 7 They brought the donkey and the colt, laid their clothes on them, and set Him on them. 8 And a very great multitude spread their clothes on the road; others cut down branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9 Then the multitudes who went before and those who followed cried out, saying: Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD! Hosanna in the highest! 6
Behold Your King! Matthew 21:1-11 (NKJV) (cont.) And when He had come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, Who is this? 11 So the multitudes said, This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth of Galilee. 10 Behold Your King!
Behold Your King! Behold Your King! 3. Palm trees
There are many species of palm trees worldwide (coconut, oil palm, etc.) but the species found in the Holy Land in Jesus time was the date palm (Phoenix dactylifera). Phoenix comes from Phoenicia. In Hebrew it is called Tamar, a synonym for a beautiful woman. Both male and female trees grow, but only the female produces dates. There were 12 springs and 70 date palms at the Elim oasis (1st mention, Exodus 15:27). Jericho was the city of date palms, profusely growing on the banks of the Jordan River (Deuteronomy 34:3).
Behold Your King! 3. Palm trees (cont.) They grow to a height of about 70 feet in a single unbranched trunk, and the fronds on top could be 10 feet
in length, with as many as 150 individual leaflets 1 foot long. These are dried and woven into mats and baskets, and of course in many places today are burned and the ashes applied to the forehead of Christians on Ash Wednesday at the beginning of the Lenten season. Female trees could produce 50 pounds of sweet (like honey) date clusters. Behold Your King!
Behold Your King! Behold Your King! Behold Your King! 3. Palm trees (cont.) Palm fronds (branches) were traditionally cut and waved
or placed on the roads to greet the victorious armies of conquering Roman legions or the King or Emperor as he would enter a city. It was a sign of respect, honor, and jubilation. This is what the people did for Jesus when he entered Jerusalem that first Palm Sunday, thinking He was coming as the promised Messiah (King of the Jews). They thought He would overcome the present Roman King, but Jesus came to die for the sins of the whole world. He did not come as a king on a horse, but as a humble Servant riding on a donkey!
Behold Your King! 3. Palm trees (cont.) At His second coming He will be the King of Kings riding on a horse (Revelation 19:11-16). The jubilation of the crowd shouting Hosanna at His first coming, changed to cries of Crucify Him five days later as they killed the King of the Jews (Pilates designation,
confirming Zechariahs prophesy)! (See John 19:14,19.) Behold Your King! 3. Palm trees (cont.) The date palm trunks were used for lumber and making
charcoal. They do not have annular rings, just the cellulose tubes for conducting water and nutrients up and down the trunk. The sweet juice from the dates is like honey and may actually be what is meant by the land of milk (livestock) and honey (dates), speaking of pastoral and agricultural prosperity of the Promised Land. Sadly, the date palm trees of Scripture disappeared sometime after 500AD and it wasnt until the 1950s that Israel began importing trees from Egypt, Iraq and Morocco.
Behold Your King! 3. Palm trees (cont.) Today those trees are reestablished but none are native to Israel. In 2005 a seed recovered from excavations at Masada was successfully germinated.
This 2000-year old male date palm has been nicknamed Methuselah and it has now successfully pollinated a wild native female date palm tree that they hope will produce dates and even perhaps alternative medicinal products. Behold Your King! Behold Your King! Behold Your King! 4. Person
John 12:12-13 says: The next day a great multitude that had come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him, and cried out: Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD! The King of Israel!
Behold Your King! 4. Person (cont.) Hosanna is a cry for salvation, as well as a declaration of praise.
Psalm 118:25-26 says: Save now [Heb. Hosanna], I pray, O LORD; O LORD, I pray, send now prosperity. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD! We have blessed you from the house of the LORD. The Savior was Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, the Lamb of God who came to take away the sins of the world. (John 1:29) Someday we will say Behold your King, but for now we say Hallelujah, what a Savior!
Behold Your King! 4. Person (cont.) The King of Israel (Messiah) came to save at His 1st advent, not to be a conquering king. Behold your King! (John 19:14) He came as the Passover Lamb of God, as Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 5:7For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us. As priests killed the Passover lambs and devout Jews were celebrating their Passover Seder, Jesus died bearing the penalty of the sins of the whole world! Just as the early children of Israel were saved from death by the death of the Passover lamb and its blood that was shed
and applied to the door posts and lintels of their homes (Exodus 12:1-28), so we also can be saved from death and given eternal life through faith in blood shed by Jesus Christ. Behold Your King! God loves and came to save the whole world! Behold Your King! Agnus Dei The Lamb of God
Behold Your King! Behold Your King! Behold Your King! 4. Person (cont.) The events the rest of that 1st Palm Sunday and the following days until Good Friday were previously summarized. We can look back at those events leading up to the death of Christ for us, and then His resurrection
on Easter Sunday as the pivotal events in our Christian history. They are never to be forgotten, and that is why we gather each Lords Day, just as the early Christians did, to remember Him in the breaking of the bread and drinking of the cup (elements that were on the table of the Passover Seder used by Christ), but then transformed into the Lords Supper that we celebrate in our local churches today. Behold Your King!
Application: 1. Prophesy: The prophesy of Palm Sunday was greatly anticipated. We should likewise be looking forward to His second coming as King of kings. 2. Preparations: The preparations for Palm Sunday were scrupulously fulfilled. We should be ready to meet our Savior and King. 3. Palm trees: The palm trees used on Palm Sunday were highly valued. We should be eager to offer ourselves as a sweet offering to the Lord. 4. Person: The Person honored on Palm Sunday was quickly
crucified. We should be thankful for Christ our Passover lamb that was slain!
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