Palm Sunday The Gospel Matt. 21.v.1 Wednesday Meditation
GOSPEL (Matt. 21:1-9)
At that time, And when they drew nigh to Jerusalem and were come to Bethphage, unto mount Olivet, then Jesus sent two disciples, Saying to them: "Go ye into the village that is over against you: and immediately you shall find an ass tied and a colt with her. Loose them and bring them to me. And if any man shall say anything to you, say ye that the Lord hath need of them. And forthwith he will let them go." Now all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying: "Tell ye the daughter of Sion: 'Behold thy king cometh to thee, meek and sitting upon an ass and a colt, the foal of her that is used to the yoke.' " And the disciples going, did as Jesus commanded them. And they brought the ass and the colt and laid their garments upon them and made him sit thereon. And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way: and others cut boughs from the trees and strewed 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."
Some think that Christ upon the Asses Colt & that the dáme followed as if she had been neglected and not cared for, and that afterwards he rode also upon the old one, which if it were so seemed to import a disgraceful signification.
Some think he rode first upon the damme and then upon the Colt, for all hold he rode upon them both, and the gospel is plain enough for it and all do agree that by the old oneſ, was signified the people of the Jews, who were the old ancient servants of God , land by the young one was signified the gentiles which were young and new be come to his ſervice , being borne as it were of the Jews, not by carnal generation, but by a special vocation of God upon the Jews refusal of Christ to be their Messiah, according to that saying of the Scripture affirming that the Apostles were directly and properly sent to the Jews, to preach the gospel; but they rejecting it they turned to the gentiles.
Now this Ceremony of Christ his riding in the first sense signify how the gentiles being, as it were the foal, the younger people carried Christ in the profession of his faith and religion, making up a Catholic or universal Church through out the world, whereby they were strong enough though but young to carry him in despite of the gates of hell, but in the latter end of the world the Jew's foal be converted and believe in Christ also.
In the other sense it may signify, how first the Church of the Jews carried the true faith & worship of God, and professed the same, against all idolaters for many hundred years together, the gentiles coming after, and let alone as if they neglected of God, and not able to carry him but afterwards the old Ass the Churches of the Jews for their pride, and ingratitude to Christ spurning and kicking at his doctrine were rejected, & the young foal the Church of the gentiles, chosen in their place to carry Christ and his religion upon her back which she doeth in that ample, honorable victorious peaceable and flourishing manner, and with that acclamation, as if these people had seen her here one earth by a revelation as Saint John the Evangelist, did in heaven, and had done all they did to her in deed arid to Christ only in figure of her.
Let us learn hereby we that are of the Gentiles to give God incessant thanks for our glorious vocation unto the faith of Christ, and communion of his holy Catholic Church, out of which there is no salvation.
Let us take head of ingratitude and negligence in his service least he neglect and reject us as he did the Jews thinking, with ourselves, according to Saint Paul's admonition If God did not spare the Jews who were his his peculiar chosen people and the true Olive tree but for want of bearing fruit cut it down, much more us the wild Olive grafted and inserted there upon.
If the Angels were not so safe in heaven but that some of them fell; If Adam and Eve were not so fare in paradise but fell; If the Apostles were not so safe in the College of Christ but that Judas, fell: if as Saint Peter say, the just shall scarce be saved, where is there in safety? but as the same Apostles admonish: us to make our vocation and election sure by good life.
Let us also pity the poor blind Jews and all others that are out of the communion of the most happy glorious and holy Catholic Church and pray for them that they may be converted & make one flock under the Shepherd Christ Jesus, who bought us all alike with his most precious blood.
A Plaine Path-way To Heaven Thomas Hill 1634
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