I believe that the cheering stopped because Jesus began to talk more and more about a cross. In the early part of his ministry Jesus talked about the Kingdom of God. This they wanted to hear about, especially since they misunderstood this kingdom to be a restoration of Israel to the days of King David's glory. But increasingly Jesus began to talk about sacrifice-even giving up your life.
I coached pee-wee baseball for years and when I came across this story, it made me think about us as Christians. The story goes, “When the young boy got up to the plate he looked over to the coach, and he saw him give the signal to sacrifice bunt. He then promptly proceeded to take three big swings and strike out. The coach ran up to him and said: Didn't you see me give you the signal to sacrifice? Yes, the boy replied. But I didn't really think that you meant it.”
Isn't that what we so often say to God? Yes, lord, I heard that talk about sacrifice but I didn't really think that you meant it. The cross says emphatically that he did mean it.
Why did the cheering stop? It stopped because Jesus more and more began to talk about commitment; it stopped because Jesus opened up the doors of the church and invited people to come in. But most importantly of all, it stopped because Jesus began to talk about a cross.
24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 25 For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it.
I am looking forward to being together on Sunday as we celebrate Palm Sunday.