Palm Sunday 2021: "A Staged Public Spectacle" - Mark 11:1-19

  • Either in your personal life, cultural noticings, media sources, what are the most prominent things that you notice that are creating division, strife, and unease around you?
  • Why do these things have such power to create such strong reactions?

  • Jesus claims to be the rightful king of the world.
  • Jesus entered into a space that was politically, structurally,  and racially fragmented and drew attention to himself to show that He alone was the only person or object that could bear the full weight of all of our expectations.
  • Jesus in completing this action bridges the gap between the clamorous relationships of the culture and points to a new world where the fruitless leaders and unfulfilling existence are removed by Jesus’ humble kingship.
Mark 11: 1-19
Now when they drew near to Jerusalem, to Bethphage and Bethany, at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two of his disciples and said to them, “Go into the village in front of you, and immediately as you enter it you will find a colt tied, on which no one has ever sat. Untie it and bring it. If anyone says to you, ‘Why are you doing this?’ say, ‘The Lord has need of it and will send it back here immediately.’” And they went away and found a colt tied at a door outside in the street, and they untied it. And some of those standing there said to them, “What are you doing, untying the colt?” And they told them what Jesus had said, and they let them go. And they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks on it, and he sat on it. And many spread their cloaks on the road, and others spread leafy branches that they had cut from the fields. And those who went before and those who followed were shouting, “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David! Hosanna in the highest!”

And he entered Jerusalem and went into the temple. And when he had looked around at everything, as it was already late, he went out to Bethany with the twelve.

The sermon mentioned that in our present culture, which is not too far off from the culture that Jesus entered into, many times people/Christians have prioritized something that doesn’t have Jesus at its center and it is made “ultimate” in the name of Jesus.
  • What are some examples of this you notice in the culture around you?
  • Do you sense that you might have an inclination towards any of these? What might drive that inclination?

Jesus enters into this society, the same one you might have described in the “Old Self” section, and says, “everyone look at me!”  This draws attention to himself and not on the issues that are dividing this clamorous culture.
  • In the same noticings from above, what would it look like for Jesus to address those issues in our day?  What would it look like to have Jesus be the center and ultimate example?
  • What might it look like for Jesus to speak to the personal examples that were mentioned in the “Old Self” section above? 

  • What are some ways that you could pray for Jesus to remove the fruitless leaders and unfulfilling existence from the world around you?  Pray for this as a group.
  • This week, pay attention to the culture around you notice what people have placed front and center.  Are these things adding clamor to the world or peace? 

Father, we thank you for calling attention to yourself and showing us that one day the world will no longer be broken, divided, and a place of strife.  God, we rest and have patience that you will not only make the world new, but also our culture, and we will finally be a people united in purpose and worship under your perfect leadership.