A Different Kind of King by Jonathan McLeod

A Different Kind of King
Jonathan McLeod
Matthew 21:4-5

This took place to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet, saying, ''Say to the daughter of Zion, 'Behold, your king is coming to you, humble, and mounted on a donkey, and on a colt, the foal of a beast of burden''' (Matt. 21:4-5).


Five days before his crucifixion, Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey. We call this day Palm Sunday. The event itself is known as the triumphal entry.

[Read Matthew 21:1-11.]


What was the significance of Palm Sunday? Why did Jesus decide to ride into Jerusalem on a donkey on that day?

1. Jesus presented himself as KING.

As Jesus rode into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, the people cried out, ''Hosanna to the Son of David!'' (v. 9). ''The Son of David'' was a messianic title. John writes that the people called Jesus ''the King of Israel'' (John 12:13).

2. Jesus presented himself as MEEK.

In v. 5, Matthew quotes Zechariah 9:9, which describes the coming king as ''humble and mounted on a donkey.'' The Greek word for ''humble'' (praus) is found four times in the NT, and is also translated as ''meek'' and ''gentle.''


The excited crowd exclaimed, ''Hosanna in the highest!'' (v. 9). ''Hosanna'' literally means ''save us.'' However, by the first century it had become a cry of praise to God. Regardless, it's clear that the people had salvation on their minds. The first part of v. 5 (''Say to the daughter of Zion'') is a quote from Isaiah 62:11, which goes on to say, ''Behold, your salvation comes.'' The people understood that the king had come to bring salvation, but they were confused as to what kind of salvation Jesus had come to bring.

The peopl ...

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