Do You See the King?
Text: Matthew 20:29- 21-11
Proposition: To see Jesus as King is to be a learner, to see Him as both veiled and unveiled King, to see not only what He does but Who He is, this is Palm Sunday.
Introduction: The reality here, this morning, is that even though we live in a democratic land, we are all under the reign of but one mighty King. But why would any people hope for a king? Perhaps in the simplest of terms a king, a good king, is one who comes to rescue those under tyranny, who rescues, protects and provides for those who are his people. A king, a good king, gives direction and purpose to a kingdom. A good king gives hope to a people, his justice reigns, his mercy is law, his love is an expression of sovereign grace. So in an age and system of democracy what does it mean to us to hope for a King, even King Jesus? Is it that we would need a King who was truly good, unable to be corrupt, one whose justice and mercy and wisdom were consistent, one who loved his people more than power, wealth, or even his own life? Is it that this king would not only need these great qualities but also be able to provide them in some enduring way so that it would not last for just one generation, but for all time to come? These were the very things that Jesus had in mind on that first day of the week some 2000 years ago, the day we call Palm Sunday. Look at Matthew 20:29.
I. This King Defeats the Tyranny of All Blindness. We know that Jesus only did what the Father set before Him, that He took His cues while on earth from the first person of the Trinity in heaven. I believe that God the Father prompted these two blind beggars to begin calling out the truth of Who Jesus is even though they didn’t realize the depth of what they were saying. “Have mercy on us O Lord, Son of David.” It was a title that referred to a Messiah who would come one day to deliver Israel as their new and final king. This simple, almost accidental in appearance, incident sets the stage for the announcing of the identity of the King. It led to the two receiving their sight and becoming followers of Jesus but it pointed the presence of a King, one who had the mercy these two beggars cried out for, One who would have the power to defeat the tyranny of blindness that made beggars out of their lives. The reality of what Jesus did here was a foreshadow of what He was about to do in Jerusalem. Here was physical blindness but there it was a blindness of heart and mind. It is this second type of blindness that all are born with, the eyes of their hearts are unopened, like blind beggars all that they can see is what they can touch. That day these blind men saw expressions on Jesus face, they saw love in His eyes, they saw the colors of day and the shape of distant things. Today Jesus is opening the eyes of people’s hearts all over the world, to see the truth of Who He is, who they are and the truth of eternity. Our King defeats the tyranny of blindness that comes from Satan, sin and even death.
II. This King Directs Those Who Are Willing To Learn From Him. It tells us that Jesus sent two of His disciples on ahead to do a certain task. A disciple is simply a learner, a learner of Who Jesus is. It doesn’t tell us who these two were, it could have been the newly sighted beggars from Jericho, we don’t know. But He did direct two learners who were willing to do what He said and thus were willing to learn from Him. The task He directed them to do seemed to make no sense, Jesus wanted them get a donkey and it’s colt and they were to just go and take it. Their only currency was the word, that’s it, just the word that Jesus told them to say. That word would secure the deal, that word cause people to say yes, that word would do what He wanted it to do. All that was needed was the willingness of the learners to go and learn. So they did and what was it they were to say, “The Lord has need of them”. It would seem that what Jesus did here would not be understood until much later. He was fulfilling what had been foretold about Him, way back about 600 years earlier in Zechariah 9:9, “Rejoice greatly O daughter of Zion! Shout O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold your King is coming to you, He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey, a colt, the foal of a donkey.” Does our King know what He’s doing, does our King direct us to be useful and effective to His purposes, are we willing to learn from Him even when it seems such a small or even irrelevant task… let the answer be Yes!
III. This King Commands Praise! Do you know what I mean by ‘commands praise’? I don’t mean that He has written some sort of regal law that says we are to praise Him, rather He has a presence that when you see Him, it commands out of you… Praise. It’s like something inside of us recognizes that this is how it is supposed to be in us, this is One who lacks nothing! He is perfectly Holy and our praise is directed at Who He is more than what He has done or is about to do. As wonderful and glorious as that is our praise is consumed with the glory of Who He is. Look for a moment at the response of the crowd that day. They see a simple Rabbi seated on a donkeys colt, an animal associated with the work of peaceful times. He rides on the paved path of palm fronds and the coats of common people. They begin to obey Scripture without even realizing it, they rejoice and shout, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” Hosanna means, ‘Save now’ and though they were seeing a hope for political deliverance there was also this sense in them that this was no ordinary man. He was the hope like king David had been. He was coming in the name of the Lord, it was to be a highest Hosanna, a saving act that came from God through this man. What they didn’t see was that this Messiah was God, what they failed to connect was the praise of Psalm 118 with the deliverance from sin of Isaiah 53. This king was soon to have laid upon Him the iniquity of us all. He was soon to be smitten, a man of sorrows, and we esteemed Him not. This King would Hosanna in the highest, save in the greatest way imaginable, He save them for all eternity from the consequence of their sin. This is why Jesus came to Jerusalem that Palm Sunday, this is why Jesus has come to you this Palm Sunday. He is not here to fix your life or to make all your problems go away. He’s here to Hosanna in the highest. He will defeat tyranny in your life, He will direct you to learn from Him, He will command praise out of you. He comes in all this as King, our Servant king!