SCRIPTURE: Matthew 21:9 (TM) – larger reading Matthew 21:1-11
Crowds went ahead and crowds followed, all of them calling out, "Hosanna to David's son!" "Blessed is he who comes in God's name!" "Hosanna in highest heaven!"
There's an old story of the boy who stood on a sidewalk, waiting on a bus. A man walking by spotted the boy, and gave him some gentle instruction. "Son," he said, "if you're waiting on the bus, you need to move to the street corner. That's where the bus stops for passengers."
"It's OK," said the boy. "I'll just wait right here, and the bus will stop for me."
The man repeated his argument, but the boy never moved. Just then, the bus appeared. Amazingly, the bus pulled over to where the boy stood, and the child hopped on. The man on the sidewalk stood speechless. The boy turned around in the doorway and said, "Mister, I knew the bus would stop here, because the bus driver is my dad!"
Does the “bus” stop for us?
The crowds gathered. They remembered their nations history. Each of them could tell the details of the Maccabean Revolt. How the zealots from the north lead the people of Israel against the Greeks, the occupiers of the land given to them by God. And when the land was recaptured the people gathered to hail the triumphal entry of the latest leader of that revolt. They shouted: “Blessed be he who comes in the name of the Lord.”
And now the land is in the hands of non-believers. Again a revolutionist rises up from the land of Zealots. Again there is a ride into Jerusalem. And, once again, the people shouted “Hosanna”. The details of their history would not be lost on those gathered around Jesus as he rode into the city. Their expectations for a military victory were high. History would repeat itself!
Did the “bus” stop for them?
In just a few days the tables would turn. The crowd would become disappointed. The “bus” didn’t stop where they had anticipated it to stop. There wasn’t going to be any military victory. History didn’t repeat it self. The details where changed this time around. Rome would continue to be control. The “bus” did stop for them!
And for us? As we approach Palm Sunday what are we expecting? Are we going to miss the message because of our expectations?
Okay, we get the message that we shouldn’t read into these events our own expectations. We get it. But we need help understanding just what is the meaning.