Triumphal Entry

Matthew 21:1-11 (Triumphal Entry)

Connects to: JESUS

            As Jesus and his disciples approached Jerusalem, they came to Bethphage at the Mount of Olives. There Jesus sent two of the disciples on ahead with these instructions: “Go to the village there ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied up with her colt beside her. Untie them and bring them to me. And if anyone says anything, tell him, ‘The Master needs them’; and then he will let them go at once.”

This happened in order to make come true what the prophet had said:


“Tell the city of Zion,

Look, your king is coming to you!

He is humble and rides on a donkey

and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.”


            So the disciples went and did what Jesus had told them to do: they brought the donkey and the colt, threw their cloaks over them, and Jesus got on. A large crowd of people spread their cloaks on the road while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds walking in front of Jesus and those walking behind began to shout, “Praise to David’s Son! God bless him who comes in the name of the Lord! Praise be to God!”

When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was thrown into an uproar. “Who is he?” the people asked.

            “This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth in Galilee,” the crowds answered.


Matthew 21:1-11 (Good News Translation)


The most important week in history began with Jesus riding into Jerusalem on a donkey. It was not unusual for a victorious king to enter a conquered city on horseback, but Jesus chose humbler transportation.

The prophet Zechariah had foretold such an event nearly five centuries earlier (Zechariah 9:9).

It’s clear that Jesus was a public figure by this time, though some didn’t know who he was. Most of his teaching and healing had happened far north of Jerusalem, in Galilee, but there was obviously some buzz that followed him there. Did the people expect him to overthrow the Roman army and set up a “kingdom of God”? Some did. The exuberant welcome connected him to the great warrior-king David, and suggested he was acting on the Lord’s behalf.

“Who is he?” is still a good question to ask. How would you answer it?


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