Case in point, as you will hear in this PODCAST, here in John 12, the beloved disciple brings us full circle. You may not see that now. But trust me, you will by the time we conclude this discussion.
Let me give you one tantalizing little hint: This beautiful symmetry to which I refer has little to do with palm branches, but everything to do with lambs.
Now watch this: When John introduced us to Jesus for the very first time, this is what he wrote:
“The next day John (the baptizer) saw Jesus coming toward him and said, ‘Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!’”
That’s in John 1.
Here in John 12, this is what we read:
“The next day, the news that Jesus was on the way to Jerusalem swept through the city.”
Now listen: In both cases, at the very beginning of Jesus’ ministry in John 1, and here at the very ending of Jesus’ ministry in John 12, it’s all about a lamb.
I know that as you read any or all of the accounts of Jesus’ Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem as recorded in all four of the Gospels, you may not see a lamb. But trust me, it’s there. Front and center, it’s there.
Just as it is in John 1, so it is here in John 12, Jesus is the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. Miss that, and you miss the whole point of Jesus’ Triumphal Entry, on this — the Sunday before Passover.
Which raises a most intriguing question: Why did Jesus choose to ride into Jerusalem on that Sunday? Jesus could have ridden into Jerusalem on Saturday (If He did, we would call it Palm Saturday!), or on Monday, or Tuesday, or Wednesday, or Thursday.
Why did Jesus choose to ride in on the Sunday before Passover? Answer that, and you get the whole picture.
Here’s a secondary question: Since Passover did not officially begin until that Thursday night (Remember Jesus sharing with the disciples their final Passover seder in Upper room on Thursday night?), why were so many pilgrims in Jerusalem so early on that Sunday?
Answer that, and you get the whole picture.
Which underscores this point: The Bible is God’s picture book, and Jesus’ Triumphal Entry is yet another three-dimensional, High Definition portrait of breathtaking significance. A panoramic masterpiece that, though we studied one portion of the Triumphal Entry last week (Daniel’s prophecy), this picture is far too important to ignore this week.
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God bless you richly as you listen.