21:1–11 Of the Synoptic Gospels, only Matthew mentions the colt’s mother, probably to emphasize that it was a young colt, not yet weaned and therefore not yet ridden (cf. Mark 11:2), and because the quotation from Zech. 9:9 prophesies that the coming king would ride on “a colt, the foal of a donkey.” Jesus chooses to make the fulfillment of prophecy unmistakable.
The Triumphal Entry is clearly a symbolic act. Zech. 9:9 was recognized as messianic by Jews, and the shout “Hosanna to the Son of David!” (v. 9) as well as the spreading of cloaks on the ground (cf. 2 Kin. 9:13) indicates that the crowd recognizes Jesus’ claim to be the Messiah. Note David’s proclamation of Solomon as his designated heir by having him ride into the city on a donkey (1 Kin. 1:33, 38, 44).