Read: Mark 11:1-10
When they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks over it, he sat on it. Many people spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread branches they had cut in the fields. Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted,
“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”
“Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David!”
“Hosanna in the highest heaven!”
The King Entered Jerusalem
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
If that colt could talk, what do you think it would have said? “Ow, my back hurts!” Probably not. Even though it had never been ridden before, this colt had a strong back and could carry Jesus just fine. Well then maybe the animal was amazed at all the people shouting and cheering and would have wondered, “Are all these people here for me? Are they excited to see me?” But this was an ordinary donkey, and people don’t get so excited about ordinary donkeys, so probably not that either. No, if that donkey could talk, perhaps it only would have asked, “Why me?”
You see, all the excitement and attention wasn’t about the donkey, but about Jesus. The people visiting Jerusalem for Passover had heard about Jesus. They knew he was a powerful teacher and that he could heal diseases. Perhaps they’d heard that Jesus even raised his dead friend Lazarus back to life. It’s no wonder, then, that so many people came out to meet Jesus as he entered Jerusalem. It’s no wonder that they cut off palm branches or took their cloaks and laid them on Jesus’ path. The people knew that Jesus was someone special!
But Jesus was more than just someone special. Jesus was more than just a popular teacher. Jesus was a king! And not just any king—Jesus was, and is, the King! Jesus is the King of all people and all creation. Jesus is the King whom angels serve. Jesus is the King who made all the universe. Jesus is the King worthy of our worship. Jesus is the King!
That colt must have wondered, “Why me?” After all, shouldn’t the King of the universe enter his city with glory—in a beautiful chariot or accompanied by powerful angels or wearing a golden crown? But Jesus didn’t. Instead, he entered Jerusalem humbly on a simple, ordinary donkey. Though King of all, Jesus didn’t come to wear a crown of gold; though Ruler of all, Jesus didn’t come to claim a throne of glory. No, King Jesus came humbly, on a donkey, to wear a crown of thorns. King Jesus came humbly, on a donkey, to claim a cross of suffering. King Jesus came humbly, on a donkey, to save his people. King Jesus came humbly, on a donkey, to save you.
Because that’s the kind of King Jesus is—our Savior King.
Dear Jesus, thank you for loving us so much that you entered Jerusalem humbly to die, so that we might enjoy the glory of heaven. Amen.
The questions below are to help families discuss this devotion. The questions are divided by age group as suggestions, but anyone could reflect on any of the questions as they desire.
Questions for Younger Children
- What did Jesus want his two disciples to bring him?
- How did the people react when Jesus entered the city?
Questions for Elementary Age Children
- Imagine what powerful kings look like—their clothing, their crowns, their palaces. How is King Jesus different?
- Though he could have acted like a king, how did Jesus reveal a humble servant heart?
Questions for Middle School and Above
- Imagine you were there that day, seeing Jesus enter Jerusalem. What’s most surprising to you about that scene?
- Why is Jesus’ heart of humility so important for the story of salvation?
Hymn: CW 133:1,2 – Ride On, Ride On in Majesty
Ride on, ride on in majesty!
Hark! All the tribes hosanna cry.
O Savior meek, pursue your road,
With palms and scattered garments strowed.
Ride on, ride on in majesty!
In lowly pomp ride on to die.
O Christ, your triumphs now begin
O’er captive death and conquered sin.