Today's Reading: St. Matthew 21:1-9
“And the crowds going before Him and following Him shouted, ‘Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed be the One who comes in the Name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest!’” (St. Matthew 21:9)
In the name of Jesus. Amen. Advent rocks! Jesus comes to Jerusalem on the royal donkey and all of Jerusalem is “shaken.” That’s not just a figurative “rocked.” It literally rocked!
He comes and they sing, “Hosanna in the highest!” Their song is a prayer! That’s what Hosanna means: “Save us, Lord, we pray.”
He’ll answer their prayer, all right. He will save His people – really and truly save them. He will take on all their faithlessness, their sicknesses, their iniquity, their nastiness, their sin, and their death. Jesus will rescue His people from everything that God could possibly be mad at them about.
Not just them, but us, too! His death will save us from our sins, from our death, from the anger of almighty God. This is why Jesus comes – to save us by dying Himself.
Wait a minute. Nothing rocks about a King dying. That sounds like Lent, not Advent. Advent is about joyful things – Christmas parties, wreaths, trees, and all sorts of cookies! He comes to die? What a downer! That’s doesn’t seem very Advent-y at all!
No, Advent is about Jesus’ coming. Today, His advent is into the city of Jerusalem. He rides in, a King like David. A King who’s come to fulfill what God expected of all other kings of Israel. A King whose death will save His people from their sins.
Advent is the season when we are given to celebrate Jesus’ coming. He’s coming, so make ready! Put away your sins, your old ways of doing things, your thoughts about how He should be, how you think you should prepare...leave all of that behind and sing, “Blessed is He, blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest!”
He comes to you! He answers your prayerful song. He comes to you not riding on a donkey, but in His Body and Blood. In His Supper, Jesus gives to you the remission of all your sins! He advents to you with all that God is for you, all the good that God has, all the forgiveness, life, and salvation, and puts it right into your mouth.
And you are shaken, you are rocked like Jerusalem that day. Not by you making a change for God, but by Jesus forgiving you of all your sins in His Supper.. You are forgiven. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Reflections for the season of Advent and Christmastide for 2009 were written by The Rev. George Borghardt III (firstname.lastname@example.org) of St. Mark's Lutheran Church in Conroe, TX.
Questions or comments regarding the Reflections may be sent to the Rev. Mark Buetow, Reflections Editor, email@example.com.