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Sunday, April 5 |

by Amy-Jo Girardier,

Brentwood Baptist Church

"Save Us, We Pray!"

Matthew 21:8-11

Today is day one of Holy Week, traditionally called Palm Sunday. It’s the day when Jesus rode down from the Mount of Olives into Jerusalem. As He rode on a borrowed colt, the crowds began to lay down palm leaves and chant, “Hosanna to the Son of David! He who comes in the name of the Lord is the blessed One! Hosanna in the highest heaven!” The word hosanna means “save us, we pray.”

The crowd recognized that by coming into Jerusalem on a colt, Jesus was fulfilling a messianic prophecy from Zechariah 9:9. The people acknowledged Him as a type of savior. They thought He was going to be the savior they were looking for—but they didn’t know He was the Messiah they needed. They thought He was going to conquer Rome. Instead, He was on a path to conquer sin and death.

On that Palm Sunday, Jesus was their hero, and they cheered Him on to be the savior they wanted Him to be. But later that day, Jesus wept as He looked at Jerusalem and its temple. Maybe He was weeping because He knew what He would be doing for the people was something the temple had only hinted at. Maybe He wept over the hearts that did not know just how much they needed Him.

There are times even today when we can be fan-followers of Jesus. There are times when we join the crowd and cheer about how much we love Jesus. But, what about those days when Jesus doesn’t read our memo of how we want Him to work? What about those days when Jesus doesn’t show up in the way we expected Him to? We cry out to Him, “Save us!” However, we really want to be saved on our terms.

Palm Sunday is a day when we celebrate how the King of Peace came into this world to save us. But to know His salvation requires more than cheering and laying down palm leaves. Instead, it requires that we surrender our hearts to the one who truly is our Savior.

Questions:

As we enter into Holy Week, it is our prayer that this guide will help you surrender those things you cling to that need to be laid down before Jesus.

  1. Maybe you have yet to truly call out, “Hosanna!” to Him and respond to His lordship in your heart and life. Maybe you have been calling hosanna to everything else, but you are realizing those people or things can’t save you. Today may be the day for you to call out to Jesus to be your Savior. If this is your decision, we would be delighted to pray with you and talk with you. We invite you to contact us at BrentwoodBaptist.com/nextsteps.
  2. Read Psalm 118. The Jews would recite the prayer found in Psalm 113-118 as part of their praise and thanksgiving during the Jewish Holy Days. The Hallel, which the crowd in Jerusalem was quoting, is found in Psalm 118:25-26. As you read Psalm 118, it’s a beautiful reminder that our trust needs to be in the Lord. Underline the passages that jump off the page to you. What is it that your heart needs to give thanks for? How does your heart need to be reminded to take refuge in the Lord instead of in other things? What is it that you need to cry out to Jesus for?
  3. Today, write the word hosanna on your hand. Pray that God would provide you with an opportunity to share your testimony with someone. Share about when your heart recognized your need for the Savior, and you cried out, “Save me!”

Prayer:

Lord, let me not simply be a fan who cheers for You when it’s easy and popular. Help me to surrender my heart and will to You, allowing You to be king of my life.

Family Activity:

Items Needed: thin/flexible branch and two sticks
Take a walk outside with your family. Tell everyone to find a thin/flexible branch and two sticks. Remove any leaves from the branch. Then, use the branch to tie the sticks in the shape of a cross. Once everyone has made their cross, read today’s scripture passage again and discuss how we celebrate the love Jesus showed us.

Resources

Click here to watch this video for a summary of Palm Sunday through the crucifixion of Christ.

Holy Week
Devotional Guide

Each day we will deliver a new Holy Week devotional for you and your family. To download the entire Holy Week Devotional Guide, please click the button below.