By Susan Chen
Jesus Christ is the Messiah who brings salvation to people of all nations. He is the sacrifice that God offers to atone for our sins. Before the Passover, Jesus entered Jerusalem humbly, riding on a colt, with his eyes set on the cross before him. With respect and reverence fit for a king, crowds of people spread their cloaks and leafy branches on the road to welcome Jesus. Going ahead of and following Jesus on his colt, people shouted, “Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the LORD!” (Mark 11:9) But did you know that these words of praise originated from Psalm 118:26?
Psalm 118 held a special place in the hearts of the Jews. It was the song used to worship God in his house when they travelled back to Jerusalem and gathered as a people to celebrate important festivals since their exile. The priests offered their worship, praise, and thanksgiving in the temple on behalf of God’s people. In a call-and-response format, the choir and the people sang, “Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the LORD. We bless you from the house of the LORD.”
In the Hebrew text, Psalm 118:26 begins with the word בָּר֣וּךְ (bā·rūḵ), which means to bless and to kneel before God in humble reverence. This is the worship that we, as God’s people, should offer to lift up our blessings, praises, and thanksgiving to Jesus Christ. He alone is our savior and God-anointed Messiah. On this day, too, let us surrender the throne of our hearts to Christ Jesus. Let us kneel in humble reverence before our Messiah, Jesus Christ, and ascribe our blessings, praise, and thanksgiving to him, singing, “Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the LORD!“
Our Father in heaven, thank you for loving me before the foundation of the earth. Thank you for coming into the world in flesh and bones and dying on the cross for my sins, so that I may have eternal life through your salvation. Thank you for saving me by bearing the punishment of my sins on my behalf. I will lift up my praise and thanksgiving, for you are God of my life and king of my heart, and I love you now and forevermore! In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen!
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