Weekday Devotionals

Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; righteous and having salvation is he, humble and mounted on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey. Zechariah 9:9

This past Sunday kicked off Holy Week with Palm Sunday. Palm Sunday recounts what we call the 'Triumphal Entry' of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem. More than 500 years ago, the Muslims took control of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. Hearing that the Jewish Messiah was prophesied to enter through the Eastern gate, the sultan had the gate cemented shut, and also put tombs in front of the entrance; thus making the proposed Messiah, ceremonially unclean should He try to enter. It is still that way to this day. The Jews believe that gate will come unsealed at some point to welcome their Messiah. The Muslims have essentially mocked this concept, but the Christians can offer a bit of chuckle. Why? Because we know the Promised Messiah of the Jews, and the one Muslims think they have prevented from entering HAS ALREADY ENTERED THROUGH THAT VERY SAME GATE! It was prophesied to the Jews that their Messiah would come, riding on a donkey, and enter through that very gate they were sent into exile through. Christians celebrate that entry every year on Palm Sunday. Needless to say, the gate has already served it's purpose. Both the Jews and Muslims don't realize this has already been fulfilled. Both the Orthodox Jews and the Muslims have misunderstood their Messiah and this Jesus. Although we might have a good smirk placed upon our face, it forces me to still wonder if we still misunderstand this Jesus when He comes again. The Jews had expected a conquering king- who would come and remove their enemies, but even the prophecy in Zechariah seems to emphasize this king will not come as you expect; lowly, riding on a donkey, not a war horse. They just missed it in plain sight. The Muslims actually believe Jesus was a great prophet, and they do in fact believe it is Jesus (not Muhammed) who will come back... to preach Islam! As Christians, we like this image of Jesus; lowly, riding on a donkey... peaceful...no war...lovey dovey Jesus. And that might accurately describe His first coming that the Jews and Muslims missed, but it does not accurately describe His second coming. This Messiah will indeed be coming through that gate, but this time, it's with a sword, on a horse, and from above. No cement or tombs are going to prevent that. We know they weren't ready for His first coming... but will we be ready for His second? Holy Week reminds us that we might also be guilty of exclaiming Hosanna! one second, and screaming crucify Him! the next. Let's be sure we know Him, when we see Him, because we will see Him.

Aaron L. Green




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