Easter Advent Week 5
What do you imagine when you picture the end of the Triumphal entry? Jesus touching the heads of the crowds and pronouncing blessings over them? A festival with dancing and fresh cakes? The crowds that fanned Him were ready for a rousing speech and a call to arms. But that never came. After His awkward ride on a little donkey down the mountain through the people singing His praise and throwing their coats on the ground before him, Jesus looked over the city of Jerusalem and wept.
This crowd wasn’t doing anything wrong. In fact, Jesus told the Pharisees that the stones would cry out if they stopped (Luke 19:40). No, Jesus loved these people, and that’s why He wept. Their minds and hearts were set on the excitement that came with the coming of the Messiah. They believed He was going to overthrow the Romans, set them free from their oppressors; save them! And Jesus did come to save them, but not in the way they expected. Because their hearts were so enraptured with what they thought Jesus was going to do for them, they lacked the understanding to comprehend the warning He gave them.
I’ve often spoken about how we need to have a growing relationship with Jesus. When you first meet someone, say a new person at church, you get a general mental picture from the two-minute description he or she gives. But, if you choose to invest in that relationship, you’ll find out more and more about him or her. The same is true in our walk with Jesus.
Paul says it this way in Ephesians 4:14-16, “So that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.”
If we fail to grow in our faith, we will be led into servitude of a different image of Jesus than what is true; idolatry. In our analogy of the new person at church, this would be like someone coming up to you and slithering gossip into your ear about the new person. You would then form your picture of the person based on the gossip rather than the truth from their own lips. A popular false image of Jesus is one who is always kind, gentle, and tolerant. But this image of Jesus overlooks how he called the religious leaders a brood of vipers (Matthew 23:33), told the crowd that it would be better to tie themselves to mill-stones and jump into the sea than make a child sin (Matthew 8:16), and called his own disciple Satan (Matthew 16:23).
We can’t know who God truly is without consistent time with Him in prayer and reading His letter to us- Scripture. This being said, we can still become confused with what Scripture tells us. In those times, it’s important to find a mentor who is further along in their growth. I’ve had a few in my life. If I had a question about Scripture or the application thereof, I knew I could go to them. “When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom,” Proverbs 11:2. When I’m humble in admitting weaknesses of my faith, there are others who strengthen my wisdom and ground me in the truth.
Without learning who Jesus truly is, we lose peace in our lives. True peace comes from surrendering ourselves to the will of God. This is what Jesus means in Luke 19:42, “Would that you, even you have known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes.” Jesus didn’t just come to give sight to the physically blind, but the spiritually blind as well. If you ask Him, He will reveal Himself to you more and more. Surrender your heart to what He says, believing that it is the ultimate truth. If you keep your eyes fixed on what Jesus wants, not what you want from Jesus you will have true peace.
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