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Mark 11:1-11 The Triumphant Entry

Gospel of Mark  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Joel and Mary Nadel, Covenant Church

From J.C. Ryle’s “Expository Comments on the Gospels - Mark”

House Rules: Phones, Respect, Stay on the Text

Jesus’ Ministry Travels


Approaching the end of Jesus earthly ministry
First part was Him establishing His purpose for God’s people - that He/the Son of God, has come to save His people from their sins
Next, He is focused on the work He must do at the Cross
He continues to teach God’s will
He continues to address the cost of discipleship
He continues to explain His mission to save His people
He continues to prepare His followers for what will happen in Jerusalem
He continues to press on toward Jerusalem
Today: The final chapter of Jesus earthly ministry begins
Mark 11:1–11 ESV
Now when they drew near to Jerusalem, to Bethphage and Bethany, at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two of his disciples and said to them, “Go into the village in front of you, and immediately as you enter it you will find a colt tied, on which no one has ever sat. Untie it and bring it. If anyone says to you, ‘Why are you doing this?’ say, ‘The Lord has need of it and will send it back here immediately.’ ” And they went away and found a colt tied at a door outside in the street, and they untied it. And some of those standing there said to them, “What are you doing, untying the colt?” And they told them what Jesus had said, and they let them go. And they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks on it, and he sat on it. And many spread their cloaks on the road, and others spread leafy branches that they had cut from the fields. And those who went before and those who followed were shouting, “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!” And he entered Jerusalem and went into the temple. And when he had looked around at everything, as it was already late, he went out to Bethany with the twelve.


In this text, we see a single exception in the history of Jesus’ ministry so far
Generally, Jesus sought to avoid public notice.
headed to rural parts of Galilee, spent his time in the wilderness - Preached and healed away from the cities
this was a fulfillment of prophecy - He should “not cry, nor strive, nor let His voice be heard in the streets”
Here only, our Lord drops His private character and chooses to call attention to Himself.
Deliberately makes a public entry into Jerusalem - ahead of His disciples
On purpose He rides into the holy city, surrounded by large crowds, shouting Hosanna - just like king David when he came back to his palace with the ark of the covenant or when He returned after Absalom’s death
All of this was done when there were thousands of Jews, from all over the empire, in Jerusalem for the Passover
Likely not a house in Jerusalem was unaware that the prophet of Nazareth was in town
This scene was recorded in all four Gospels - the Lord wants us to remember it
Its clear that the Lord wants us to pay close attention to this
Today we will study it with that in mind and see the lessons we can learn for ourselves

First, let’s look at how Jesus chose to go public with the last act of His life

He came to Jerusalem to die and wanted everyone to know it
Up to this point, He shared the deep things of the Spirit only with His apostles
He used parables to address the poor and uneducated Galileans
He worked His miracles in the more rural areas as well.
When it came time for Him to die, He made a very public entry into Jerusalem
Got the attention of the rulers, priests, elders, Scribes, Greeks and Romans
He knew the most wonderful event to ever happen in the world was about to take place.
The great Son of God was about to suffer in place of sinful men and women - He was to become a great sacrifice - the great Passover lamb - who would be the great atonement for the world’s sin
He arranged it so that His death would be a very public death - He arranged it so that the eyes of all Jerusalem would be able to watch.
When He died, He died before many witnesses
Here is another proof of the unspeakable importance of the death of Christ
We need to remember all His gracious words
We need to strive to walk in His holy steps
We need to prize His intercession with God the Father, on our behalf
We need to look forward to His second coming
The most important thing for each of us to know about Jesus is His death on the cross
From His death flow all our hopes for the future - without that death, we have nothing firm to stand upon - no hope
As we get older, and get closer to death ourselves, we need to appreciate His death more and more.
In all we think about Christ, we need to rejoice in nothing as much as the great fact He died for us

Secondly, Note the poor state our Lord put Himself in, while He was with us

How did He enter Jerusalem on this most important occasion? A royal chariot, horses, soldiers, crowds of celebrities around Him like a king? Not at all
He borrowed the colt of a donkey and His saddle was made up of the clothing of His disciples
In keeping with the whole concept of His ministry - never had any riches in this world.
Crossed the sea of Galilee in a borrowed boat, entered the holy city on a borrowed donkey, was buried in a borrowed grave
In this event, we see the marvellous relationship between weakness and power, wealth and poverty, godhead and manhood - these characterized the history of our Lord
Anyone who reads the Gospels must notice
He could fed thousands from a few loaves often got hungry Himself
He who could heal the sick sometimes got tired Himself
He who could cast out devils and demons with a word, was sometimes tempted Himself by Satan
He who could raise people from the dead, submitted Himself to death
We see the same in this passage:
He causes multitudes to greet Him in His entry to Jerusalem in triumph
We see Him on a donkey, making a triumphant entry
This is all so fitting and appropriate
We should never forget that Jesus was both God and man - natures both divine and human
If we saw His divine acts only, we might forget He was a man
If we saw His times of poverty and weakness only, we might forget He was God
As it is, we see Jesus as both God and man, united in one person
We cannot explain this mystery, but we can be comforted that “this is our Saviour, this is our Christ, one able to sympathize because He is man, but one who is Almighty to save, because He is God.”

Finally, let’s note that our Lord rode in on a borrowed donkey - one more proof that poverty is no sin

Many of the things that cause poverty are very sinful: drunkenness, addiction, squandering precious money, dishonesty, laziness
These cause so much of the poverty in the world and are very wrong in the sight of God
But, to be born poor, to inherit nothing from our parents, to have to work hard for our daily bread, to have no property of our own - those are not sinful at all
The honest poor man or woman is as honorable in the sight of God as the richest person among us, perhaps more so
The Lord Jesus Christ was Himself poor - no silver or gold - nowhere to lay His head
Though He was rich, He became poor for our sakes
To be like that cannot be wrong, in itself
In whatever state God places us, we need to do our duty - if God keeps us poor, we should not be ashamed
Jesus cares for us as well as for others.
The Saviour of sinners knows what it is to be poor.

The Gospel

1 Corinthians 15:3–4 ESV
For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures,
Romans 10:9 ESV
because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.

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