Most of the crowd spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. And the crowds that went before him and that followed him were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” (ESV)
This is the passage we usually read and think about on Palm Sunday as we prepare for Easter, but consider it for a moment as a Christmas story. When Mary was about to give birth to her baby, the world did not know her or Joseph. No one knew what was coming, apart from three wise men from the east. You and I have the benefit of the long view of history. We know Who this baby was and what He had come to do. If the citizens of Bethlehem had known what we know, they would likely have responded as we see in these verses from Matthew.
We are excited by the coming of Christmas because it means time off from work and school. It is a chance to get together with family and friends. It means fun and music, lights and decorations, and of course, shiny presents.
What if we took our faith seriously? What if we realized that what we are celebrating is the arrival of God on earth? Ancient people knew how to celebrate the arrival of a king. There was joy and festivity, much as we enjoy today, but without question, the celebration was focused on the king.
Copyright © 2013 by Steven R. Perkins