Oct5MonOctober 5, 2020
Zechariah 9:9 Rejoice greatly, O Daughter of Zion! Shout, Daughter of Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey. 10 .... He will proclaim peace to the nations. His rule will extend from sea to sea and from the River to the ends of the earth. (NIV)
Good morning Church!
Are you tired of the way the world is going? Has the pandemic got you down and discouraged? Are you longing to be free from all of creation groaning under the weight of sin and decay? There is good news!!! The King is coming...back!
Last week, we read a parable Jesus told of a king going away to receive his kingdom, and returning to reign and rule. This week, Luke aptly follows this story with the entrance of the King into Jerusalem, with His followers praising Him. This is one of my favourite passages, since it foreshadows the day when Jesus will be declared KIng of Kings, and return to rule and reign in justice and mercy. Can you imagine that day! Are you longing for it? It is the hope of every believer...deliverance from the current world, and eternal life in the glorious kingdom of God!!!
The "Triumphal Entry" account starts with Jesus having sovereignly orchestrated the provision of a colt, a young donkey, that has never been ridden - reserved for someone very special to ride it. Although all of the gospels have this story in them, only Luke says the disciples placed Jesus on the colt. I found this fascinating. Jesus is exalted, lifted up, by His followers. In order for Him to be King, people have to choose to put Him in that position, and accept Him as King. True disciples do that - they set Jesus up as King of their lives (vs.35). And then, they must worship Him as such, which is what happens next (vss. 37-38). Jesus is King, the only king who comes in the name of the Lord; the only one who can bring true peace. Notice that it is the disciples who are worshipping Him, and singing praises for all the miracles they had seen (vs. 37). Luke is the only one who mentions "peace", which invokes fully the passage in Zechariah 9. Jesus is the Prince of Peace, who will establish His kingdom in peace, even as Luke introduced Jesus in the beginning of his gospel (Luke 2:14). Do you want true peace? It is only found in Jesus! If one is stuck in religion, there is no peace. The religious are offended by Jesus (vs.39).
Jesus looks at Jerusalem and weeps, which literally means he was bawling, sobbing. His heart ached for this great city which would soon reject its King, and later be destroyed for their refusal of the bringer of peace (vss. 41-44). They "did not recognize the time of God's coming to you" (vs. 44). What a statement! Don't miss the message - God came to them in the person of Jesus the Messiah - they refused Him. The prophecy of Zechariah was playing out before their very eyes, and they missed it - their King was here, riding on a colt...they rejected Him. Jesus weeps! What a picture of our rejected God! Oh how He loves us, and weeps when we reject Him!
Full of emotion, Jesus enters the temple and starts turning it upside down. He is angry that this man made religion is blinding the eyes of the people so they cannot see the truth of Christ. Religion is a poor substitute for the true presence of God. Religion without Jesus is a useless lie. How much of our "christianity" is nothing but empty religion - a repetition of rituals and ceremonies - but no Jesus. I am reminded of the church in Laodicea that had a whole lot of religion, but Jesus is outside the church (Rev. 3:14-22). How many "christians" go through religious ceremonies week after week, but Jesus is not in their hearts - it's all external.
Friends, this week's reading is a call to enthrone Jesus as King - set Him on that colt; let Him get the glory and praise. It is also a call to evaluate our walk with Him - is it merely external religion or internal relationship. Lastly, it is a call to be filled with hope, despite how crazy the world is. Why? Cause our King is coming! This story takes place at the mount of Olives. One day Jesus will return and stand on the mount of Olives, and be declared King of the whole Earth! (Zechariah 14:4, 9) Be encouraged! Jesus is coming soon!
Have a great week!
Listen to this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaYRmSKm98c