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Gospel of John - Chapter 12 - Lesson 2

Posted on May 24, 2016 at 8:15 PM Comments comments (0)

The Triumphal Entry


John 12:12 (ESV) The next day the large crowd that had come to the feast heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem. 13 So they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet him, crying out, “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord, even the King of Israel!”


Palm branches were plentiful due to the date palms in Jerusalem. Palm fronds had become a nationalistic symbol of the anticipation and expectation of the Messiah’s reign. Hosanna meant “give salvation now.” This praise word was found in Psalm 118:25 which was a part of the Hallel sung each morning in the temple during the Feast of Tabernacles and the Feast of Dedication, especially the Passover. The crowd was wanting the Messiah, the One who comes in the name of the Lord, to take on rulership, kingship, right then. But that time had not yet come. Jesus’ purpose at that time in history was to die for His people in order to free them from slavery to sin rather than to lead them to war to free them from slavery to Rome. The time for Him to rule as an earthly King is still in the future even though He is and always will be the King of kings.


John 12:14 And Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it, just as it is written,

15 “Fear not, daughter of Zion;

behold, your king is coming,

sitting on a donkey's colt!”


Jesus chose to ride in on the foal of a donkey in order to fulfill the prophesy quoted here which is found in Zechariah 9:9. The synoptic gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke) also record what is referred to as “The Triumphal Entry.” This is one of the few events that is mentioned in all four gospels. This proves that it has great significance. It was a direct fulfillment of messianic prophesy as you can see by reading Zechariah 9:9 below:


Zechariah 9:9 (ESV)Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion!

Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem!

Behold, your king is coming to you;

righteous and having salvation is he,

humble and mounted on a donkey,

on a colt, the foal of a donkey.


The people rejoiced and shouted praises as Jesus entered Jerusalem, but the atmosphere would change soon – His time had nearly come. The people were proclaiming Jesus as their King, but they did not understand that this King of theirs would have to die to fulfill His divine purpose.


John 12:16 His disciples did not understand these things at first, but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things had been written about him and had been done to him.


The disciples did not see that one and one made two while Jesus was riding the donkey; but after Jesus’ resurrection, the magnitude of His manner of arrival dawned on them. They realized the whole foal of a donkey thing was a fulfillment of prophesy in Zechariah 9:9 and the shouts of “Hosanna!” were quoting Psalm 118:25. Since their first “audiences” would be Jewish, being able to prove Jesus was the Messiah foretold by the prophets would be a most useful witnessing tool. We are wondering as we write this whether some of the teaching time Jesus had with his disciples was spent having them learn all the Old Testament prophecies that applied to Him. Seems plausible. The word does not tell us.

John 12:17 The crowd that had been with him when he called Lazarus out of the tomb and raised him from the dead continued to bear witness. 18 The reason why the crowd went to meet him was that they heard he had done this sign.


The people who had seen Jesus raise Lazarus were talking to others about Him, and word traveled fast even without Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. So the people who came out from Jerusalem to meet Jesus did so because they had heard He raised a man from the dead. They were eager to see who this Man was who had done all these miraculous things. They wanted to verify for themselves whether what they had heard could be true.


John 12:19 So the Pharisees said to one another, “You see that you are gaining nothing. Look, the world has gone after him.”


The Pharisees went into hyper egotistical jealous mode, and continued to fear that Rome would see this as a rebellious uprising. The fact that the people were shouting “Hosanna” and calling Jesus “King” added fuel to their fears. The plot to kill Jesus intensified among the Pharisees even as His popularity grew among the common people.


Q – Jesus fulfilled well over 300 Old Testament prophecies concerning the messiah. Have you examined the evidence that Jesus is the Son of God? It is historically documented that Jesus of Nazareth was a real person living on the earth at a specific time in history. The biblical accounts bear witness that He was both God and Man. The testimonies of those who have surrendered their lives to Him are strong evidence that Jesus Christ is alive and well and continuing to rescue people from the quicksand of sin in order to adopt them into His forever family. Weigh the evidence. Surrender your will to His and be forever changed and completely satisfied!