Sermon by Rev. Christian C. Tiews – 11/26/2010
“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!’” (Mt 21:9)
Three days ago we celebrated the official start of the Christmas season.
Already, many homes and businesses are decorated with Christmas lights, Santa is popping up all over, and radio stations are playing Christmas carols.
And so, we begin this first Sunday of the Church Year—with the triumphal entry of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem?
Wouldn’t this Gospel reading be more appropriate for Palm Sunday?
Yet ever since the days of the Early Church, this section of Matthew 21 has been the pericope for the first Sunday in Advent.
The Latin word “advent” means “coming”—quite appropriate because at the beginning of each Church Year we await the first coming of the Messiah—as the baby in the manger.
He is the incarnate Son of David, the One who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest!
The crowds on Palm Sunday see Jesus the Messiah humbly riding into the City of David and call out to Him, “Hosanna,” a Hebrew word which means “Save us now!”
This indicates that for them thousands of years of waiting are finally over.
The Messiah who will save and redeem God’s people has finally arrived.
Yet every Advent season God’s people also await the Second Coming of the Savior, when Jesus Christ will return to raise every human being since Adam and Eve from the dead.
Unbelievers will be sent to eternal punishment, while all believers in Jesus Christ will begin glorious lives in the New Jerusalem, the physical place also known as heaven.
Yet before the Messiah can redeem His people,
Before He can reign as king,”
Before He can “deal wisely and execute justice and righteousness in the land…”
…Our Lord must face the Jewish religious leaders who are plotting His destruction.
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