Today is all about Jesus.
He spent three years teaching his disciples the Good News so that they could teach us. That time is past. Jesus is now on his way to the cross, the grave, and glory.
The past few lessons have led up to this moment. March 5—Adam Obeyed; March 12—To Save the World; March 19—Living Water; March 26—You Claim You Can See; and April 2—Dem Bones. All examples of what will happen April 9-16.
First, Jesus obeyed God. He did only that which God expected of him. Now he rides into the City of David as the heir to the throne.
Second, he delivered God’s message of Grace to the world. No one is exempt. Every single human has Grace splashed upon him/her. We may reject it, but it is there.
Third, the water that cleansed the world in Noah’s day is ready to cleanse the world again. This time it is the water of life.
Fourth, the Light of God stands in the streets of Jerusalem to show us the way. We need not walk in the darkness of our way.
Fifth, as Lazarus stepped from the grave after three days, so will Jesus.
The long reading today in Matthew is but an outline of the week that shook the world. Every word Jesus spoke and every action he took was scripted in the Old Testament. I believe that one reason that Jesus waited until he was thirty to begin his short ministry was that he had to learn every detail of what God planned of the Messiah. He had to talk with God until he understood how he was to do all that God had promised.
In those final hours when he was sweating blood while asking God to figure out another way, he was feeling his human limitations. He knew that death would be unpleasant, but the real problem was what he had to do after death. Nothing less than to enter the Gates of Hell and battle the Great Deceiver; a battle that is still ongoing in our human time-frame.
Be righteous and do good.