A Message of Faith
On April 28th we will celebrate or rather we will participate in our Lord's triumphant entry into the city of Jerusalem. His triumphant entry was foretold almost six hundred years before by Prophet Zechariah, who said, "Behold, your King comes to you; He is righteous and saving; He is gentle and mounted upon a donkey". Many people witnessed this event and cried out "Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!". But they did not realize that Jesus was not an earthly king coming in the name of the Lord. They did not understand that in fact the Lord Himself, the Heavenly King, was coming in His own name. The entry into Jerusalem is an event in which the nature of the Triune God participates through the personhood of the Son of God. The entry therefore is a timeless event that takes place within the eternal present of God's time.
The Church teaches us the timeless character of the Lord's Entry into Jerusalem, through our hymnology. On Palm Sunday we will sing aloud that "Today" this great event takes place for our salvation. We are not simply remembering the day on which a past event occurred. Rather, we are proclaiming that in all reality our Lord's entry and the Grace of it are happening today, now, in our present time. Thus, during the Divine Liturgy we become witnesses and participants in the event through which God achieves our salvation. Therefore we also are standing with the crowd in Jerusalem crying out "Hosanna". We are not re-enacting this event but rather we are participating in it.
The Orthodox Faith is an ancient Faith, but it does not belong in museums. Museums preserve the knowledge of the past so that those who live in the present can learn from those events. The Orthodox Faith is a living faith of the present that brings all peoples and all generations - past, present, and future - into unity with each other and with the living God. Today, on Palm Sunday, let us not simply celebrate or remember the event of Palm Sunday. Instead, let us participate in our Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ's triumphant entry into Jerusalem and cry out with the multitudes of every generation of Believers "Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!" Amen.