Palm Sunday – Confirmation
Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David! Hosanna in the highest! Amen. In the name of Jesus who rode into Jerusalem to save us, dear friends in Christ, we all have certain days in our lives that stick out, that we remember, and perhaps remember our entire lives. Maybe it was being on the winning team of some sport, maybe it was when we got married, or maybe it was when our child was born, or when we graduated from school, or a special family reunion, or maybe you remember your own confirmation day – like this day is for Paige and Delenna. We all have certain days etched into our minds that we remember perhaps our whole lives. And usually these days revolve around something special, something that we’re celebrating.
In our text here for Palm Sunday we see a celebration. On Sunday of Holy Week Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a colt. This is Passover time at Jerusalem so hundreds of thousands of people came to the city of Jerusalem. And what does Jesus do? He has two of his disciples go and get a colt and not just any colt but one that had never been ridden before. They bring this colt to Jesus, put their cloaks on it and Jesus gets on and starts riding toward Jerusalem. And how do people respond? They lay their cloaks down before, take palm branches and place them on the road, it’s an incredible act of honor and submission. And their singing his praises, “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David! Hosanna in the highest!”
What are they saying? Their praising Jesus as their Lord and Messiah. They’re worshipping Him as the King. They’re celebrating the one who has come to save them. And what does Jesus do? He accepts it. He accepts their praise. It’s proper that they are worshipping Him as the Messiah. It’s proper for them to shout “Hosanna!” Which means save us.
But what kind of a Savior were they looking for? Now, of course, we don’t know what was going through their minds, we don’t know what they were thinking as they shouted “Hosanna!” But what do we know? We do know that many people were looking for an earthly king, an earthly Savior, we do know that when Jesus had fed over 5,000 people, they wanted to make him king by force, we do know that even the disciples thought they could sit at Jesus’ right and left in his kingdom. We do know that by the end of the week many are no longer shouting Hosanna, but crucify. So what kind of a Savior did they want?
What kind of a Savior do you want? Can we be just as earthly focused? Just as focused on having a wonderful easy, care-free life here on earth? Is it easy for us to celebrate and sing God’s praises when things go well, but have no reason to praise him with things aren’t going well for us?
Today, of course, is confirmation Sunday. All adult members of our congregation have made the same vow or promise to God- that we will remain faithful to God and to His Word, ready to forsake everything -even our very lives rather than turn our back on God. And we have these choices every day- give in to sin and temptation or honor God. And whenever we fail, whenever we give in to sin, we’re exchanging the heavenly and eternal for the temporary and the earthly- we’re looking for what we perceive as an easy earthly life at the expense of our eternal lives. How we’ve failed! How much we need Jesus to ride into Jerusalem.
And that’s exactly what Jesus did. They shouted Hosanna! And that’s what Jesus came to do. Jesus rode into Jerusalem, humbly, gently, graciously and lovingly, to do what? He knew where He was headed. The was headed to the cross, he was headed to suffer the world’s sum of hells, all in order to save you and me for eternal life!
So, yes, we celebrate. We may celebrate all kinds of things in life, but this is something we celebrate all the time. For at the end of our lives everything will become so much clearer. At the end of your life, when you’re about to leave this world, you’ll be able to see all of life for what it really is and what really matters. At the end of your life, what are you going to be celebrating? Will you really be celebrating a sports team win? Will you really celebrate a promotion at work? Will you really be celebrating any earthly life achievement? No. Instead you’ll see those things for what they really are- temporary earthly things.
But what will you celebrate? You’ll celebrate the fact that you have a King, a Savior who rode into Jerusalem humbly, gently, graciously in order to save you eternally.