Please don’t be alarmed by the todays title. It’s a line from a song that was made popular by the Blues Brothers, specifically, Dan Aykroyd. The song was called, Rubber Biscuit. It used to crack me up and I do a fairly good impression of Aykroyd singing it. Every Sunday my wife or I will say, “time for a Sunday-go-to-meeting-bun… bow,bow,bow! So please don’t be offended by my seeming lack of respect for the day. This is a new feature and if the feedback is good I will continue it every Sunday.
Today is Palm Sunday. All over the news we see shots of people holding a palm branch. At churches across America, millions of people are hearing about Jesus riding into Jerusalem on the back of a donkey and the crowd laying their robes and palm leaves along the way. While all of that is true, in most churches the importance of the event has been dumbed down and even obfuscated. What happened on Palm Sunday was the fulfillment of the prophecy that we find in Daniel 9:24-25 Here it is in full:
Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy. Know therefore and understand, [that] from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince [shall be] seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times.
The highlighted part is what I want to call your attention to. It is here that we realize that the angel that has appeared to Daniel is setting up a ticking clock. He is saying very clearly that from the time of the command to rebuild and restore Jerusalem until the Messiah comes there will be seven weeks and three score and two weeks. Here’s the same passage translated a slightly different way:
Now listen and understand! Seven sets of seven plus sixty-two sets of seven will pass from the time the command is given to rebuild Jerusalem until the Anointed One comes.
We know from archeological evidence that the decree to rebuild Jerusalem was given by Cyrus, and if we count the seven sets of sevens, which are years, we arrive precisely at the date of when Jesus rode into Jerusalem which we celebrate as Palm Sunday. This is the only time in Jesus’ ministry where he allows himself to be worshipped as a King. This event is what drives the Pharisees over the top and they then seek to kill Him. The Pharisees challenge Jesus, asking Him to stop the people from crying out, Hossana! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord! Jesus declares, that even the rocks would cry out if they are silenced. I take this literally – but that a discussion for another time! Jesus is fulfilling prophecy as he rides into Jerusalem on the back of the donkey. This is from Zechariah 9:9 Below are the exact phrases.
Zec 9:9 Rejoice greatly, O Daughter of Zion! Shout, Daughter of Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
So not only is Jesus fulfilling the prophecy of Daniel but also of Zechariah. What is sobering is that the people who were living at that time did not understand what was happening, including the religious leaders of the day. We see Jesus weeping over Jerusalem saying, Jerusalem, Jerusalem, how I would have gathered you as a hen gathers her chicks but you did not know the day of your visitation…. In other words, Jesus is holding the nation of Israel collectively responsible for knowing and understand the prophecies! This is what happened on Palm Sunday. The Messiah rode into Jerusalem, precisely to the minute, on the back of a donkey, fulfilling not one, but two prophecies and yet they missed it! Are we any different today when we are warned from the same book, including Jesus own words that when the son of man returns it will be like the days of Noah? The church is steeped in tradition and unfortunately most people don’t understand the prophetic significance of the day that we are celebrating! All of that to say this. Wake up, we are in the days of Noah! His return is soon!