by Mike Benson
Jesus sent two disciples ahead of him into a nearby village to carry out a special errand.
“Go into the village opposite you, where as you enter you will find a colt tied, on which no one has ever sat. Loose him and bring him here. And if anyone asks you, ‘Why are you loosing him?’ thus you shall say to him, “Because the Lord has need of him'” (Luke 19:28-36).
Once the animal had been secured, Jesus purposely rode the colt into Jerusalem. I say “purposely” because his presence on the beast served as a sort of formal announcement.
In ancient times, a conqueror would ride a stallion into a city indicative of the fact that he reigned over the people. However, when that individual came mounted on colt, it said that peace prevailed.
So, Jesus, the Prince of Peace, rode the colt into Jerusalem (cf. Zechariah 9:9) proclaiming his impending coronation.
Not surprisingly, his entrance into the city was met with divergent responses. Many hailed him with joy, welcoming him as an earthly sovereign who had come, so they thought, to establish the Davidic kingdom and overthrow the Roman empire (Luke 19:37).
By contrast, others were angry with the Lord because they interpreted this ride into Jerusalem as rank arrogance and blasphemy (v. 39). The religious establishment insisted that Jesus rebuke the jubilant crowds for their error.
I find it compelling that Jesus, not only rode into Jerusalem on a colt, knowing full-well how folks would respond, but he was also conscious of what would inevitably occur in that city.
While the people on this occasion shouted, “Hail Him! Hail Him!”, before long they would cry, “Nail Him! Nail Him!”
Jesus knew that Jerusalem meant his torturous death–and he rode into town anyway. He crucified self before he was crucified on Calvary.
May I ask some hard questions for your consideration, good reader?
- When a fellow Christian has sinned against you, and you anticipate friction in the meeting, will you, like Jesus, crucify self, go anyway and engage this saint (Matthew 18:15)? Or, will you avoid the meeting all together?
- Husbands, when there is serious conflict in your marriage, indicative of some major heart issues, and past experience has taught you that it is easier to sweep problems under the rug than to address them, will you take the lead in your relationship as God has ordained you, and lead your wife in reconciliation (Colossians 3:19)?
- Elders, when you are aware of the fact that there are sheep who have been incrementally drifting from the fold, and you anticipate some difficulty and resentment when you go see them, do you go anyway (Acts 20:28; 1 Peter 5:2)?
- When you are personally aware of the fact that a fellow child of God is engaging in egregious sin, do you go to that individual with a burden on your heart and try to lead him or her back to Jesus (Galatians 6:1-2; James 5:19-20)? Do you go despite knowing that it will be a difficult conversation?
Jesus knew that going to Jerusalem would bring pain, and he went anyway.
What about you? Will you go anyway?