Reflect: The next day, after Jesus had been anointed by Mary with expensive perfume, he begins His triumphant entry into Jerusalem. The triumphant entry is one of the few events in Jesus’ ministry that is recorded in all four Gospels (Matthew 21:1–11; Mark 11:1–11; Luke 19:28–40 and John 12:12–19). In these few verses, there are many hidden treasures and fulfillments of prophecies from the Old Testament about Jesus the Messiah.
• Jesus was riding on a donkey, which was symbolic of royal authority coming in peace. Jesus could have easily made the walk, as was His normal custom, but He is making a statement here to fulfill the prophecy in Zechariah 9:9, “Do not be afraid, O Daughter of Zion; see, your king is coming, seated on a donkey’s colt.”
• The people made a path of branches for Jesus to enter the city as royalty. They are waving palm branches, which were considered symbols of peace and victory (Nehemiah 8:15).
• Palm branches were also used as symbols of victory and kingship. By meeting Jesus with palm branches the crowd showed they were welcoming Him as king. Earlier in His ministry, Jesus avoided crowds who wanted to make Him king (John 6:15), but now He is accepting their gesture and its significance.
• The crowd shouts, “Hosanna” in Greek, which is adapted from a Hebrew expres- sion that means, “save now” and “help now!” They also shout, “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!” (Psalm 118:25-26)