Coming in Peace

by Apr 5, 2020Devotional, Easter, Echoes of Easter

Read Zechariah 9:9

Have you ever witnessed a motorcade? It’s hard to miss. First, the police vehicles arrive with flashing lights and sirens to clear the traffic, then various security vehicles, followed by the official limousine carrying the president, with all the entourage and communication vans and more police cars bringing up the rear. Typically, a presidential motorcade includes forty to fifty cars, depending on how much pomp and circumstance the occasion calls for. It’s quite the spectacle and hard to miss.
 
Jesus’ arrival into Jerusalem was quite the spectacle, too. Matthew tells us that “the whole city was stirred up” as the people shouted out Hosanna, waving their palm branches in praise. It was definitely hard to miss. But his choice of transportation was a bit unique.
 
In ancient times, when a king entered into a city, the animal he rode on sent a message to the people about his purpose for coming. If he came in war, he would ride a horse – a symbol of strength. If he came in peace, he would ride a donkey – a symbol of humility.
 
Zechariah’s prophecy, fulfilled by Jesus’ Triumphal Entry, celebrates the arrival of a king who would save the people. But not a king who comes in war. This king will ride in on a humble donkey and will “speak peace to the nations” (Zech. 9:10). Jesus rides on a donkey through the shouting crowd, their raucous voices crying “Hosanna,” knowing that in a few short days their shouts will turn to jeers and “Crucify him!”
 
The past number of weeks, all the coronavirus stuff has been relentless. Information overload. Emotions out of control. New ways of doing life. It’s been overwhelming. Isn’t it comforting to know that our Savior came to bring peace? Peace then in the midst of the strident crowd who would soon turn against him. Peace now in our chaotic and uncertain circumstances. 

 

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