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The Weeping King (Luke 19:28-44): A Sermon for Palm Sunday 2016

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The Weeping King (Luke 19:28-44): A Sermon for Palm Sunday 2016

Leaders try hard not to cry in public. Instead, they seek to project a measure of strength and courage in difficult situations. They usually want to send a message that everything is under control, and crying just unnerves the people who have to watch it. So politicians and public figures try to stuff their tears and stifle their emotions. If, for some reason, they do cry in public, they strive to “leak a little,” not gush. But on the first Palm Sunday, Jesus cried openly in public. Luke 19:41 says he wept over the city of Jerusalem, and the word for “wept” there means to sob or to wail. It was a great lament, not a little sniffle. But why was Jesus so upset? His answer was both bold and blunt: “because you did not recognize the time of God’s coming to you” (Luke 19:44). It’s a passage that reminds us that to receive Jesus is to receive God, and to reject Jesus is to reject God. Ultimately, Jesus’ tears were an ominous sign that the week ahead would be a long and difficult one for him.

Leaders try hard not to cry in public. Instead, they seek to project a measure of strength and courage in difficult situations. They usually want to send a message that everything is under control, and crying just unnerves the people who have to watch it. So politicians and public figures try to stuff their tears and stifle their emotions. If, for some reason, they do cry in public, they strive to “leak a little,” not gush. But on the first Palm Sunday, Jesus cried openly in public. Luke 19:41 says he wept over the city of Jerusalem, and the word for “wept” there means to sob or to wail. It was a great lament, not a little sniffle. But why was Jesus so upset? His answer was both bold and blunt: “because you did not recognize the time of God’s coming to you” (Luke 19:44). It’s a passage that reminds us that to receive Jesus is to receive God, and to reject Jesus is to reject God. Ultimately, Jesus’ tears were an ominous sign that the week ahead would be a long and difficult one for him.