Last night I was reading Mark’s account of the triumphal entry into Jerusalem and it seemed such an odd juxtaposition during Advent. But then I started to think about it…maybe the triumphal entry is what it’s all about.
Triumphal entry 1: a baby is born in an out of the way stable in a small town in rural Israel. The only ones there to greet his birth are cows, a donkey and maybe a few chickens. Yet the entry is announced in triumph by angels on a hill, singing Glory to God in the highest.
Triumphal entry 2: an itinerant preacher rides on a donkey, the symbol of a defeated king and he enters a city renowned for killing those who speak on behalf of God. His parade is accompanied with the throngs singing, “Hosanna to the King, blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord.”
Triumphal entry 3: a man who just days ago died a horrible death on a cross appears to the grief stricken women in the garden near his tomb. When they realize who he was, they fell to his feet and worshiped him. Then they went to the city and announced, “the Lord is Risen”
The triumphal entry, traces the journey from the manger to the cross to the resurrection. The power of the revelation of God is clearly outlined for us all, and given to each one of us as a gift. And that of course leads to ………
The triumphal entries 4 and following: as each one of us opens our hearts and invites Jesus in. We accompany that entry with the confession “My Lord and my God”. When that happens, everything over which Jesus triumphed becomes those things over which we triumph.
From manger to resurrection this is the triumph of our God. Let us share in the joy and in the power. “This is Christmas.”