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 19:30-31).
Once the animal had been secured, Jesus purposely rode the colt in 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 a colt, it said peace prevailed.
So Jesus, the Prince of Peace, rode the colt into Jerusalem (cf. Zech. 9:9) proclaiming His impending coronation.
Not surprising, His entrance into the city was met with divergent response.
Many hailed Him with joy, welcoming Him as an earthly sovereign who had come, so they thought, to re-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 just the opposite, “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 personal consideration, dear reader?
Jesus knew that going to Jerusalem would bring pain–and He went anyway.
What about you?
Will you go anyway?
THOMAS DREIER TELLS the story of a an eighty-year-old man who was in the process of planting a young peach tree.
The old man’s neighbor asked, “Do you expect to eat peaches from that tree?”
“No,” he said.
“At my age I know I won’t.
But all my life I’ve enjoyed peaches–never from a tree I had planted myself.
I wouldn’t have had peaches if other men hadn’t done what I’m doing now.
I’m just trying to pay the other fellows who planted peach trees for me.” (David Dunn, “Bread Upon The Waters,” Trying Giving Yourself Away, 1947, 22).
THOUGHT: We are often unconscious of the fruits of our own thoughtfulness, and likewise of the thoughtfulness other saints have invested for our benefit, perhaps many years ago.
Shouldn’t we be planting peach trees for future generations (Eccl. 3:2; 1 Cor. 3:6; John 4:35-38)?
“How quickly and effortlessly can we slide into a series of small decisions that land us in a tangled web from which there is no easy exit.” Erwin Lutzer, “Conflict with Doubt,” Growing Through Conflict, 48
“For if, after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the latter end is worse for them than the beginning” (2 Peter 2:20; cf. Galatians 6:1a).
MODERN RELATIVISTIC THINKING suggests that we have no rule or standard by which we can distinguish between good and evil, right and wrong, or moral and immoral.
Hilary Putnam, a Harvard University professor, sums it up when he declares that moral and ethical judgments are “something that we ultimately judge by the ‘seat of our pants'” (Alan Crippen II, ed., “The Train Wreck of Truth and Knowledge,” Reclaiming the Culture, 59). We must come to see that there is no possibility of a ‘foundation’ for ethics…” (Ibid), he asserts.
Is the professor correct–are morals and ethics based upon our own subjective opinions? Are there no moral absolutes?
Consider for a moment the repercussions of Mr. Putnam’s philosophical extreme. (NOTE: The following excerpts are very explicit):
“Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter” (Isa. 5:20).
7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at his physical stature, because I have refused him. For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”