Today is Palm Sunday, 7 days before Easter. On this day, Jesus entered Jerusalem on a donkey.
Luke 19: 28-40, 28 When He had said this, He went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. 29 And it came to pass, when He drew near to Bethphage and Bethany, at the mountain called Olivet, that He sent two of His disciples, 30 saying, “Go into the village opposite you, where as you enter you will find a colt tied, on which no one has ever sat. Loose it and bring it here. 31 And if anyone asks you, ‘Why are you loosing it?’ thus you shall say to him, ‘Because the Lord has need of it.’ ”32 So those who were sent went their way and found it just as He had said to them. 33 But as they were loosing the colt, the owners of it said to them, “Why are you loosing the colt?”34 And they said, “The Lord has need of it.” 35 Then they brought it to Jesus. And they threw their own clothes on the colt, and they set Jesus on it. 36 And as He went, many spread their clothes on the road. 37 Then, as He was now drawing near the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works they had seen, 38 saying: “ ‘Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord!’ Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” 39 And some of the Pharisees called to Him from the crowd, “Teacher, rebuke Your disciples.” 40 But He answered and said to them, “I tell you that if these should keep silent, the stones would immediately cry out.”
On Palm Sunday in AD 32, Jesus descended from the Mount of Olives and entered the Temple in Jerusalem riding on a donkey, to fulfill Zechariah 9:9, from 500 BC.
Zechariah 9:9, “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you;
He is just and having salvation, Lowly and riding on a donkey,
A colt, the foal of a donkey”.
The disciples brought to Jesus a never saddled donkey. They threw their clothes on the donkey and Jesus sat on it. They also threw Palm branches on the roadside.
Matthew 21:8, “And a very great multitude spread their clothes on the road; others cut down branches from the trees and spread them on the road”.
Mark 11:8, “And many spread their clothes on the road, and others cut down leafy branches from the trees and spread them on the road”
The multitudes rejoiced, praised God, and sang the messianic Psalm 118, ‘’Hosanna, blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord’’.
The Pharisees demanded that Jesus silence the multitudes and His disciples and not proclaim Him as Messiah, claiming blasphemy. Jesus replied that if they kept quiet, the stones on the roadside will cry out.
Ephesians 5: 1-7
V 1, 1 Therefore, be imitators of God as dear children.
Therefore, is the connecting link to the previous chapter. Many years ago, Paul was in Ephesus for 3 years and he knew his audience very well. Hence, it was appropriate for him to address them as dear children. In view of all that God had done, Paul encouraged his audience, (and us), to be imitators of God.
V 2, And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.
Greek for love is “agape”, which means unconditional or sacrificial love. Demonstrate unconditional and sacrificial love to each other to just as Christ demonstrated His unconditional and sacrificial love for us when He sacrificed Himself to God on the cross for us.
VV 3-4, 3 But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; 4 neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks.
Greek for uncleanness is “akathartos”, which means morally impure. Greek for filthiness is “rhuparia”, which means moral defilement. Greek for foolish talking is “morologia”, which means moronic speech. Greek for coarse jesting is “eutrapelia’’, which means obscene jokes. Paul commanded his audience, (and us), to stay away from adultery, immorality, moronic speech, and obscene jokes. Instead, we should always give thanks to God.
V 5, For this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.
Greek for covetousness is “pleoneksía”, which means greediness. Greek for idolator is “eidololatres”, which means an idol worshiper. A fornicator, an unclean person, a greedy person, and an idol worshiper will be excluded from the Kingdom of God and Christ.
V 6, Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not be partakers with them.
Greek for empty words is “kenos logos”, which means deceitful or erroneous teachings. Paul warned his audience, (and us), not to be deceived by erroneous teachings and not to associate with false teachers. Greek for wrath is “orge”, which means anger. God’s anger will come upon those who disobey Him.