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MATTHEW Xxi. 9.
And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the Son of David; blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord: Hosanna in the highest.
OUR blessed Saviour Jesus Christ was now very near to Jerusalem, where he was to be crucified. The time too was drawing near, when he was to offer up himself on the cross as a sacrifice for the sin of the world. He was, as you have been taught, a great prophet sent by God into the world to teach all people what they must do in order to be saved. He therefore determined to enter into Jerusalem in the
same manner, as their former kings and judges had done before him—that is, mounted on an ass. Besides, there was another reason why he should do so. It had been said of him many years before he came down from heaven, that he should make his entry into their city, mounted on this animal.
When you come to be better instructed in our religion, you will hear a great deal about the prophecies. A prophecy is the telling of any thing being to happen long before it does happen. And God only can make a man able to do this. We know only what is present: we may guess about what is to happen, and scarcely that, but we cannot know. And any one now, who pretends to know it, either deceives himself or deceives others. For many hundreds years before our Saviour was born, there were many good and holy men, whom God taught to see into the future. They spake of things many hundreds of years before
those things came to pass. Now one of these men, whose prophecies (remember the word) are in that Holy Bible, had said of our Lord Jesus Christ in this way: "Tell the daughter of Sion, behold thy king cometh unto thee, meek and sitting upon
an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass." And now the thing, thus told of beforehand, came to pass. The meek and humble Jesus called two of his disciples, and sent them into the neighbourhood to procure this animal for him. They did so: and finding one (for their Lord knew all things, even the most trifling) they brought it to Jesus. They then spread their clothes upon the animal, and set Jesus on it. And in this manner did the king of the world, of Jews as well as heathens, enter into the great city. He did not enter it in state and grandeur like an earthly king. He wanted no earthly pomp and show. He had come into the world to save it from sin and death, not to heap up riches and trample upon men. He came
to save, not to destroy: to teach the humble and the poor in spirit and in fortune, how they may be happy here and infinitely happier hereafter.
The common people, however, who felt neither prejudice nor envy, had a great love for Jesus. They loved his preaching: they were healed of their sicknesses by his power. And as there were now a great many of these people at Jerusalem, who had gone thither in order to keep the solemn feast of the passover, they came out in crowds to meet him, as soon as they heard that he was drawing near. We read that they spread their garments in the way; and that some cut down branches from the trees, and strawed them in the way. They were anxious to pay respect to him in every way they could. And therefore, while crowds went before him, crowds also followed him, crying out and saying," Hosanna to the Son of David :" that is, may God save and prosper our
great prophet. "Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord." "Hosanna in the highest ;" that is, sing over and over again, as loud and as high as you can, Hosanna-May God save and prosper our great prophet! In this manner, my friends, did Jesus enter into the great city. Hailed and welcomed by the multitude, greeted by thousands and with the good wishes of all, did the meek and holy Jesus do as had been told of him, many hundreds of years before, that he would do. He now went into the temple of God-the great church set apart for the worship of God. And because the Jews had taken no account of the outer part of the temple, for this reason that a few heathens worshipped in it, but suffered it to be made a place of trade and traffic, he drove out all that were buying and selling in this place. He wished them to see, that God was about to receive the heathens into as much favour as themselves and he would not, that the place,