We are about to embark on Jesus’ last journey in HIS ministry.  Now begins the downfall of the belief that the only way to God is through the temple and the priests.  There is a new saviour in town and HIS name is JESUS the CHRIST!!!
  Buckle up as we dig into the events of our saviour.  Yes, we all know them, but there may be a few details we have read over and not realized.  The event is recorded in the gospels, but please realize each is reported from that persons view.  Just as witnesses to a crime.  You will get the same event, but from different vantage points.Here we go!
  Beginning in Matthew 21 when Jesus and the disciples came to Bethphage, unto the mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples to get a donkey and a colt and bring them out.  Now in most places this would be stealing; however, Jesus said if anyone says something to you tell them – The Lord hath need of them; and straightway he will send them.
This verifies what the prophet said in Isaiah 62:11 and Zech 9:9  The disciples did as they were told and brought the donkey to Jesus.  Now we are going to see a mass of peoples show how they waiver and bend as the wind does blow in the next few days.

   Today, yes, the here and now at this time is a time of rejoicing.  The disciples put garments on the donkey for Jesus to ride on, Jesus mounted, and began the trek into Jerusalem.  From this comes what we celebrate today as Palm Sunday.  The people in verse      8 And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from the trees, and strawed them in the way.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.
  Jesus’ glory on earth is actually recognized as Jesus boldly rode as the King of peace and the crowd excitedly joined him.  Later on we will see how these people crumble under the political/religious pressure.  Just as we do today. Food for thought!!!
  Now many portray Jesus as meek and humble, but HE is bold and aggressive for our FATHER GOD when it is necessary.  As Jesus rides HE comes to the temple.  Upon entering there are vendors there selling sacrifices at high prices and I would imagine the with a kick-back to the priests. (sounds like our politicians today).  Even Gentiles came to worship God and experienced being “scalped” by the vendors as many were unaware of the exchange rate of the currency at that time.  The temple had been commercialized and JESUS was anger, mad. highly P.O-ed.  Not happy of what was happening in HIS Father’s house.  So what did HE do? He turned the tables over and announcing: It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves. 
Verse 14/15 is important to take in and dwell upon for a moment. Take special note to the italic and underlined print.   
14 And the blind and the lame came to him in the temple; and he healed them.
15 And when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying in the temple, and saying, Hosanna to the son of David; they were sore displeased,
  Now the leaders were not happy and they approached Jesus asking if he heard what the children are saying.  Jesus’ response:  Yea; have ye never read, Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise? 
The priests and scribes were probably in the Temple and may not have heard the children and people coming, shouting, and the excitement in the street.  They spent most of their time in the temple studying the Law, and yet they perverted its meaning, and could not see its bearing on the events that passed around them. 
  This was probably an uninvited disruption in their normal routine and were not happy. Jesus responds to them as HE often did saying:  “have ye never read” – oh, don’t you know this was a slap in the face from the priests and scribes stand point.  This frequently was Jesus’ response when confronted by this brood of snakes.  Jesus left and went to Bethany to spend the night.
  The next morning Jesus is on HIS way back to Jerusalem and he was hungry.  There was a fig tree, he went to it and it produced no fruit. Jesus said to the tree:  Let no fruit grow on thee henceforward for ever. 
  The disciples, now being with Jesus all this time were still amazed at what Jesus said and how fast the tree withered and asked how it did so that fast.  Jesus’ response: 
Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done.
22 And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.
  Jesus is not telling us to us “magic” and perform great acts of miracles.  What HE is doing is making a strong point about our faith or lack there of.  When you come to a “mountain” in your faith, do you visit with God or are you self-reliant?  We discussed this early in our studies.  What Jesus is saying is not Carte Blanche to get anything we want just by asking and believing.  When we ask this must be in harmony with God’s kingdom and God’s will.  So, quit praying to win the multi-million dollar lottery – it may not be good for you. 🙂
  Now, in verses 25-27 Jesus is greeted with a challenge.  The leading priest and elders come up to him and ask, basically, just who do you think you are and why do you believe you have a right to do and say what you do.
  And, of course, Jesus replies with a question: 
I also will ask you one thing, which if ye tell me, I in like wise will tell you by what authority I do these things.
25 The baptism of John, whence was it? from heaven, or of men?
This was a trick question because if Jesus said his authority came from God they would get him for blasphemy; if he said of his own authority then the crowds would know the Pharisees had the greater authority.  They did not want to answer this question, they only wanted to trap Jesus.  Pharisees (today a re-spelling of Pharisees is politicians) wanted the truth only, yes only if it supported them.
  Jesus conveniently cast the net of entrapment back at them.  For all the people believed John to be a prophet and they knew if they said he was merely human the people would be upset.  So, verse 27 says it all so well:   27 And they answered Jesus, and said, We cannot tell. And he (Jesus) said unto them, Neither tell I you by what authority I do these things.
  Tomorrow we move into the Last Supper.  Thank you for reading.