Sunday, April 17, 2011

But that was when I ruled the world ...

When they had come near Jerusalem and had reached Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go into the village ahead of you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, just say this, “The Lord needs them.’ And he will send them immediately. “ This took place to fulfill what had been spoken through the prophet, saying, “Tell the daughter of Zion, Look, your king is coming to you, humble, and mounted on a donkey, and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.” The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them; they brought the donkey and the colt, and put their cloaks on them, and he sat on them. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and that followed were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest heaven!” When he entered Jerusalem, the whole city was in turmoil, asking, “Who is this?” The crowds were saying, “This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.”
- Matthew 21:1-11

Jerusalem bells are ringing! Roman cavalry choirs are singing! The King has arrived!

What if Jesus had done as the crowd thought he might? What if he had led an open revolt, overthrown Herod, and kicked the Romans out of Palestine? With Pilate in town for the Passover, it was the perfect time. Maybe he could have pulled it off!

But what happens to kings? After David and Solomon, the Kingdom of Israel had split and eventually been taken into captivity in two waves. No kingdom lasts forever. No king reigns forever. Who would ever want to be king? And what kind of kingdom would this become?

So Jesus sits on a humble donkey as the people rally around him, and already he’s thinking, “I’m going to be betrayed this very week. And my own friends are going to deny me. When it comes down to it, even Peter won’t have anything to do with my name. The end is near.”

As human beings, we can’t cling to anything—not even life. Nevertheless, Viva La Vida.

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