Monday, April 10, 2006

Cheers for the one we'll be killing

Many people spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread branches they had cut in the fields. Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted,
"Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!"
"Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David!"
"Hosanna in the highest!"
(Mark 11:8-10, NIV)
Yessir and yes-ma'am...take a good look at that Jesus fellow! He's come in the name of the Lord God! He's bringing the Kingdom that we've been waiting for! We're praising him for all his wonderful works! An entry into Jerusalem so triumphant that they'll be calling it "Palm Sunday" for years!

And five short days from now, we're all going to be crying out for his murder.

Almost every mother's child standing here along the parade route will be down at the temple, or down at Pilate's place. And there won't be a "Hosanna" to be heard. Not one.

Nope. Almost all of us will be there, yelling "Give us "Barabbas!"

And "Crucify him!"

Yes indeed. If Jesus could have come back in the 1970's and made a guest appearance on "Laugh-In," he definitely would have won the "Fickle Finger of Fate" award.

How's this for a public-opinion collapse, eh? Hero on Sunday, servant of all at Thursday dinner, arrested on Thursday night, and the target of our hate and bloodlust Friday morning.

Wanna know the most amazing part of all, though?

Jesus knows all this. Today. Big-C-minus-five-days and counting...

Yeah, I know - it LOOKS like he's listening to all the adulation and praise...but he knows what's coming. He's been telling those crazy disciples of his for a week or more that he's going to be handed over and crucified. They don't believe it, today, any more than the rest of us do.

But Jesus knows.

And he came to Jerusalem anyway.

He knows we're going to turn on him in 5 days like a pack of hungry wild dogs, and watch him be torn nearly to shreds before he's crucified.

And he came to Jerusalem anyway.

He knows we'll betray him; that some of us will be jeering as he's dying.

And he'll go to the cross anyway. Even though a single word from him could have struck us all dead, and another word could have shattered that cross into splinters. And we would have deserved every bit of it.

Jesus didn't come to Jerusalem for the praise, or the ride on the colt.

He came for you. And for me.

Such is the Son of Man's love for us all: Jesus knew what the road ahead held...and Love led him here. For us.


Rick said...

Hey brother. Good stuff and you are right we are brothers of a different mother.

"And he came anyway."


Poor Mad Peter said...

I've always wondered how Christians could be told for maybe 15 centuries or more, that the crowds were in fact cheering Jesus' arrival.

Hosanna literally means "Save us now!" It could as easily have been a jeer. Almost beyond doubt, a challenge.

Monk-in-Training said...

I love that concept.. and He came anyway. very good post.

Peter, I suspect the "crowds" were far fewer than many of us think, and the challange is an intersting idea.