Welcoming Jesus as King (Palm Sunday)
When Jesus enters Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, he enters with tears in his eyes. He knows the people won’t accept his claim to kingship when he challenges them to abandon the path of nationalist hostility that eventually leads to war with Rome. He knows that disaster is coming. Welcoming Jesus as King on our own terms is to seek a kind of salvation that cannot save us.
Jewish nationalists believe salvation can be reduced to the political and military, so they want the king to settle their religious scores. We often reduce salvation to the purely spiritual, so we treat faith as if it doesn’t have things to say about how we live our lives. Both are incomplete pictures of the salvation God desires to give us. Salvation is the experience of Eternal life–God’s life–both here and now, as the Spirit enables, and in the age to come. So Welcoming Jesus as king is not something we do in parts of our life, but something we must do in every area of our life if we want to experience the fullness of God’s saving grace.