Those who believe, hope, and love receive Christ’s kingdom of peace and eternal life.
The donkey was a sign of peace. Jesus enters Jerusalem in meekness and humility, as the Messianic King who offers victory and peace to his people. That victory and peace would be secured in the cross and resurrection which would soon take place at the time of Passover.
Why did the religious authorities reject Jesus’s offer of freedom, forgiveness, and new life in the kingdom of God? Despite Jesus’ numerous signs and miracles, the Jewish authorities could not accept his claim to speak and act in the name of his heavenly Father. They were blinded by their misguided ideas of how the Messiah would restore Israel and rule the earth. And Jesus revealed to them how Satan had led them into temptation – both to reject him as the Messiah and to thwart his claim by killing him.
Jesus met their opposition and hostility with courage and determination to do his Father’s will. He willingly embraced the cross in order to destroy the works of Satan and to save both Jews and Gentiles through his atoning sacrifice for the sin of the world. Jesus shows us the way to the kingdom of God – through faith and obedience to God’s word and will for our lives. To be a follower and disciple of the Lord Jesus requires faith and obedience – they are two sides of the same coin. The word disciple literally means one who learns from the Master and who listens to the voice of the Teacher. And the word for obedience literally means to listen under and be subordinate to the one who has rightful authority to teach and command what is just and true.
How can we grow in faith and discipleship – by faithfully following the Lord and obeying his word. Faith is a free supernatural gift of God. It is more than just a belief in the truths of God. It is first and foremost a personal relationship of trust and obedience to the Lord and his word. The Lord is worthy of our complete trust and wholehearted devotion because he is utterly reliable, just and true, and he is faithful to his word. That is why we can entrust our lives to him and submit to him without reservation.
God does not leave us in the dark or remain distant and silent. He reveals himself to all who earnestly seek him and hunger for his truth. God, in fact, first seeks us out and draws us to himself. We could not find him if he did not first seek to reveal himself to us.
Yes, these are trying times. He is there. As we entering to this new Holy Week, call out to him, journey with him, embrace him. He is there.