Religion Today: The Conquering King – A Palm Sunday Devotional
Imagine the epic scene when the conquering king enters the city on his huge warhorse. The trumpets announce the king’s arrival. Bright banners flank the procession. The people crowd the streets to get a glimpse wondering if this king will be any better than the last one.
As the king passes by, they look into his eyes hoping against hope that he will be a good king – One who will have a good heart, be fair, righteous and bring blessing to their land. They know that if they show the slightest disrespect their lives might be forfeit. They cheer but it is only halfhearted because there is so much that is unknown. Then the king looks down and sees a small boy struggling to see the parade over the crowd. He reaches down to offer his hand to the boy, smiles and says, “Come up here with me where you can see everything better.” He lifts the boy up onto the horse in front of him and off they go to the palace. The whole mood of the parade is changed. This conquering king in one simple act has said it all. Yes, they will be his subjects but he will not be a cruel master. He will be kind and considerate to the least among them.
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This is much like Palm Sunday. This marks the time when a conquering king rode into Jerusalem on a donkey and palm branches were spread out before Him. As is often said, He could have ridden a war horse indicating He was entering the city as a conqueror. He could have been carried into the city on an enclosed litter with the curtains shut so that he could not be seen and could remain isolated from his subjects. Instead, he rode on a small donkey. His feet probably dragged on the ground. People were able to reach out and touch Him and see him at eye level. He did not wear a coat of armor or wear royal clothing. This man was clearly not the king they expected. The crowd was singing, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” Grandparents explained to their grandchildren that what they were witnessing was foretold long ago by the prophet Zechariah when he wrote: “Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion! Shout, Daughter Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and victorious, lowly and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.” (Zechariah 9:9)
Riding into a city on a donkey would indicate this was a representative sent on a mission of Peace. The only conquering that would take place, on this visit, was to conquer men’s hearts and to conquer sin and death. He would bring Peace to the most troubled soul. The road into Jerusalem was covered with branches, jackets and open hearts.
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That is what Palm Sunday is all about: A Peace Mission. Peace with God and the Peace from God.
Oh, how much we need peace for our troubled hearts this day. Yes, we need the Prince of Peace.
John 12:12-13 “The next day a great multitude that had come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him, and cried out: “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD! The King of Israel!”
Richard Lewis is a graduate of Arizona State University (Advertising) and California Baptist University (Computer Information Systems). Richard and his wife Sue met while they served as staff members at Campus Crusade for Christ for 8 years in the 1970’s. Richard served in the Campus Ministry at University of Texas at El Paso, Louisiana Tech and at the International Headquarters in San Bernardino, California.
Following their ministry in Campus Crusade Richard was the owner and manager of a bicycle shop in Riverside California for 19 years. After retraining in the computer field at California Baptist University, Richard worked as a Information Systems contractor and employee at Boeing for 17 years.
Richard has written over 150 published articles in Information Systems and Computing publications including Windows Magazine and Windows Scripting Solutions. He has also served in a leadership role as a Deacon and Elder in several churches as well as being a meditation presenter and Men’s Ministry coordinator.
Richard has written hundreds of meditations and devotionals that have been used in church and small group meetings. Many of these have been published in The Upper Room and Racers For Christ publications and on their web sites.
In 2021, Richard published a collection of his devotionals. These are available in a Kindle and paperback format on Amazon (ISBN 979-8705738878) “Life Stories to Uplift and Encourage”.
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Trevor Montgomery, 50, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source (RCNS) and Shasta County News Source (SCNS).
Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers Valley News, Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; the Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County; and Mountain Echo in Shasta County. He is also a regular contributor to Thin Blue Line TV and Law Enforcement News Network and has had his stories featured on news stations throughout the Southern California and North State regions.
Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)
During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.
Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.
Trevor has been married for more than 30 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 18 grandchildren.