The Greatness of His Self Denial

And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the Son of David… – Matthew 21:9

My kingdom is not of this world… – John 18:36

Our Savior intended by this singular procession, to let His enemies know His real strength among the people. If he could gather so great a crowd of adherents without any summons or prearrangement, surely the whole population must have been, to a large degree, in his favor. If such an enthusiastic reception was spontaneously given Him, how many would have gathered if a plan had been arranged? Had He agreed to lead them against the Romans, thousands of fanatics would have followed His banner. If He had designed to make Himself a king, and had permitted His servants to fight, the old fierce courage of the Jewish race would have burned up like a flame of fire and His enemies would have fled before Him. He came not with war in His heart, but He would let the foeman see the hilt of the sword which He might have drawn from its sheath: He would let scribe and Pharisee bite their lips, while they said, “Perceive ye how ye prevail nothing? behold, the world is gone after Him.” If the Savior had willed to use the baser methods that men nowadays would freely employ, by asking the world’s alliance, He might have made Himself a King at once. Had He blended politics with religion, and yielded something to general prejudice, He might at once have set up a worldly kingdom. But no, He knew no selfish ambition, His kingdom was not of this world; He came not that He might be honored here, but that He might be put to shame for our redemption. The diadem to which He aspired was a crown of thorns; yet He lets His adversaries see that He was not lowly because He was weak, nor gentle because He was feeble. They might, if they would, have seen by that day in Jerusalem the greatness of the self-denial which abstained from earthly honors. ~ C.H. Spurgeon

The King of the Jews

Hosanna to the Son of David: Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest. – Matthew 21:9

But they cried, saying, Crucify Him, crucify Him! – Luke 23:21

Jesus was the son of David, and therefore He was by natural right the King of the Jews. If He had taken possession of His own, He would have been sitting on the throne of the chosen dynasty of David by right of birth. He was, moreover, as the Messiah, and Christ, the King of His people Israel. Concerning Him it had been said by the prophet, “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: He is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.” Our Lord Jesus literally came to Zion in this manner. As King He rode to His capital and entered His palace. In His priestly royalty the Son of God went to His Father’s house, to the temple of sacrifice and sovereignty. Among the tribes of Israel is He seen to be “one chosen out of the people,” whom the LORD had given to be a leader and commander for the people. Although they might afterwards choose Barabbas, and cry that they had no king but Caesar, yet Jesus was their King, as Pilate reminded them, when he said, “Shall I crucify your king?” and as His cross declared when it bore the legal inscription, “This is Jesus the King of the Jews.” Before His trial and His condemnation, He had put in a public claim to the rights and prerogatives of Zion’s king, whom God has set upon His holy hill. Would to God all my hearers fully recognized our Lord’s kingdom and yielded to His sway! Oh, that you would bow before Him, and put your trust in Him! Part of His intent in riding through Jerusalem was that we also might know Him and reverence Him as King of kings and Lord of lords. ~ C.H. Spurgeon

The Son of David

Hosanna to the Son of David: Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest. – Matthew 21:9

Jesus had frequently avowed His mission in plain speech; He had told them who He was, and why He came; but they would not hear; so that they dared to say to Him, “If Thou be the Christ tell us plainly.” He had plainly told them times without number. Now He will assure them still more positively of His kingdom by openly riding into the city of Jerusalem in state. Now shall they see that He claims to be the Messiah, sent of God, of whom the prophet said, “Say ye to the daughter of Zion, Behold, thy salvation cometh.” Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings shall His fame be proclaimed; multitudes of people shall acknowledge with loud voices that “He cometh in the name of the Lord”; until the envious Pharisees shall be driven to ask, “Hearest Thou what these say?” You will remember that our Lord rode into Jerusalem as a King, but He was also brought there as the Lamb of God’s Passover, whose blood must save the people. It was not meet that the Lamb of God should go to the altar without observation; it was not fit that He who taketh away the sin of the world should be led to the temple unobserved. The day was near when He was to be offered up, and all eyes were called to look on Him and know who and what He was. Therefore, He permitted this great gathering and this honorable attention to Himself, that He might say to Israel, by deeds as well as by words, “I am He that should come. I am He who of old had said, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of Me, I delight to do Thy will, O My God.” When they crucified Him the rulers knew what He professed to be. Albeit many of them were in ignorance as to the truthfulness of His claims, yet they knew right well that they were crucifying the One who professed to be the Lord of glory, the One who was acknowledged to be the Son of David, the One who had in public avowed Himself to be King in Zion. – C.H. Spurgeon

The Meek and Lowly King

Hosanna to the Son of David: Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest. – Matthew 21:9

These people, on a certain day, formed a company, and marched with Jesus towards Jerusalem. On the way, our Lord sent two of His disciples to fetch an ass and its colt; and upon this last He rode into the city. Another crowd, coming out of Jerusalem, met the company attending upon Jesus, and, forming one great procession, the whole multitude marched into the city escorting the Lord Jesus in humble state, and paying Him honor as King in Zion. Upon no stately war-horse but riding upon a colt, the foal of an ass, the meek and lowly King entered the city of David attended by vast and enthusiastic crowds, who strewed the fronds of palms, and the branches of trees, and their own garments in the way along which He rode. Our Lord thus received a right royal and popular reception to the metropolis of His nation…He that was, as a rule, “despised and rejected of men” was, for the moment, surrounded with the acclaim of the crowd. All men saluted Him that day with their Hosannas, and the whole city was moved. It was a gala day for the disciples, and a sort of coronation day for their Lord… Many men live for ambitious ends, but our Lord lived to escape the honors of men. The proud hunt after praise; but our Lord fled from preferment, hid Himself from fame, and shunned the throne which, by descent, belonged to Him…Once the Savior rides in state as a King, but soon He walks down those very streets bearing His cross like a criminal. How soon is the public voice purchased for evil! – C.H. Spurgeon

The Third Day

…and the third day He shall rise again. – Matthew 20:19

Behold Him! Behold Him! His hands are extended and cruelly nailed to the wood. His feet are fastened to the tree, and He Himself is left to bear the weight of His body upon His hand and feet. See how the nails tear through the flesh as the weight drags the body down and enlarges the wounds! See, He is in a fever! His mouth is dried up and has become like an oven, and His tongue cleaves to the roof thereof! Crucifixion was an inhuman death, and the Savior was “obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” The wonder is, that He could foresee this, and speak of it so calmly. He meditates upon it and speaks to choice familiar friends about it. Oh, the mastery of love, strong as death! He contemplates the cross and despises its shame.

Thus He dwells on it all, and then closes by saying, “and the third day He shall rise again.” We must never forgot that, for He never forgets it. Ah! you may think as much as ever you will of Calvary and let your tears flow like rivers. You may sit at Gethsemane, and say, “Oh, that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for my Lord!” But, after all, you must wipe those tears away, for He is not in the grave; He rose again on the third day. O blessed morning!. The first day of the week stands for ever the remembrance of our risen Lord, and on that day, He renews His special communings with His people. We believe in Him; we rise in Him; we triumph in Him; and “He ever liveth to make intercession for us.”

God bless this meditation to you by His Holy Spirit! ~ C.H. Spurgeon

We Must Speak of Our Bleeding Savior

…and they shall condemn Him to death, and shall deliver Him to the Gentiles to mock, and to scourge, and to crucify Him... – Matthew 20:18, 19

The priests, whose office made them types of Himself, and the scribes, who were the official interpreters of His Father’s Book, these condemned the holy One and the just. They count Him worthy of death: nothing less will serve their turn. This the Christ could plainly see; and it was no small trial to come under the censure of His country’s governors. They could not put Him to death themselves. If they dared, they would have stoned Him, and that would have broken the prophecy, which declared that in death His enemies must pierce His hands and His feet. They can condemn Him to death, but they cannot execute the sentence. Yet none the less this iron entered into His soul, that those who were professedly the servants of God condemned Him to die…They delivered Him to the Gentiles. The Master dwells on this. It opens another gate through which His sorrows poured. At the hands of the Gentiles He dies, and for Gentiles He suffered. Beloved, I like to see how the Master notes this point. He makes distinctions; He does not say that He should be condemned by Pilate; but He is condemned to die by the chief priests, and then He is delivered to the Gentiles…O believer, behold thy Lord bound and taken away to the hall of Pilate. See Him delivered to the Gentiles, while His fellow-countrymen cry, “We have no king but Caesar”! They shout, “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!” and the Gentiles carry out their cruel demand…These three words follow-“To mock, and to scourge, and to crucify Him.”…What dreadful scorning He endured! It was cruel, cutting, cursed scorn. They mocked Him and they scourged Him…We must exhibit the bleeding Savior, if we would make men’s hearts bleed for sin. The cries of His great grief must ring in their ears, or they will remain deaf. ~ C.H. Spurgeon