How dubious it must have been for those first Palm Sunday observers. Some recollected the stories of Alexander in a previous generation on this same road. Busephalus surrounded by shining shields and glistening swords proudly carrying his master king in to the old city. But now?
One from the road via Jericho quizzes the crowd, “Is this one we’ve followed mounting an ass?” “Yes, yes he is,” an answer returns. Zion has yearned for many seasons. She exists with no rightful king. Until now?
The prophet of old had spoken distinctly but even as celebratory shouts of “Hosanna” filled the street being lined with palm branches, a growing number set their face to halt the intrusion. “Make your followers be quiet,” they bid of the man on the donkey. Rocks lining the roadside shudder as if anticipating their opportunity to share in the festivity. They remain dormant as the crowd shouts even louder.
The man and his mount make their way further into the city where soon enough the crowds will gather on his account again. He gazes through compassionate tears. Their joy will turn to anger; their cries to “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!“