unday’s Spiritual Spin I am thankful for the beginning of Holy Week, Palm Sunday. Believers celebrate the triumphal entry of the Messiah into Jerusalem for Passover. The palms thrown onto His path are symbolic of victory–a legacy from the Maccabean Rebellion about a hundred or so years earlier, and from the Romans, who had used that symbol for ages. Both the Jews and the Romans were well aware of the symbolism.
That He rode into town on a donkey, the ride of choice for the Prince of Peace (as opposed to riding in on a horse–considered an animal of war), is also telling. Even if the cheering crowds missed that little tidbit. Shouldn’t have. The Sanhedrin–Powers That Be for Jerusalem and other exotic places–knew Zechariah 9:9 fairly well and they weren’t nearly so enthusiastic about His entry into their city as a king. This image was reinforced by the people laying out their cloaks, rushes & palms in His path. (cf: 2 Kings 9:13, The Gospel accounts of this event). And hoi polloi were rejoicing: Hosanna! (Psalm 118: 25–26). See also Leviticus 23:40 for palms and rejoicing.
What’s the “crossover” factor? The bit that ties (in my VERY humble opinion) this story of the Messiah with the story of Passover (other than the “coincidence” of timing)? It is written that prior to Passover, each family was to choose a lamb for sacrifice. And that’s what I believe was happening: the people chose the Lamb, though they didn’t know Him.