Bible Reading: Luke 19:28-44, Matthew 23:37-39
“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!” (Matthew 23:37-39)
As we come together as a church to fast and meditate on these verses approaching Easter, what is on your mind?
A small point to make is the vast disparity of our depravity and Christ’s love. I say small because I know what I can grasp and share is next to nothing. The heights of Christ’s love and the depths of our sins are far greater than the capabilities of the human mind. Yet to this end, we endure; to grow in the knowledge of His immeasurable grace that our doxologies and praise may be raised higher day by day. Have this attitude this week as we approach the day of our Lord. In humility and contrition, bow down before the Lord and seek His face. Seek to know Him and His grace as Jeremiah 29:13 says, “You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart”.
The depths of our depravity
Like the crowds who gathered and cried, “blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord” as Jesus entered Jerusalem on a colt, it is easy for you and I to voice such praises. Many worship Him for the many miracles and blessings He brings. So few understand who Christ is and what He has done for us. Many are those who honour Christ with their lips. Yet their hearts are far from Him (Matthew 15:8-9 paraphrased). Is your heart inclined to Christ as Lord and Saviour, or is your heart inclined to self and Christ as a benefactor for all the blessings we desire?
Jesus laments over our depravity. He knows the seriousness of our sins. He knows how we have rejected Him. He knows how we kill and stone the messengers of truth. Oh, how we are desolate without the grace of God!
The heights of Christ’s Love
Towards a crowd like us, Christ mounted the colt in humility, stepping firmly in the path of obedience towards the cross. If His disciples did not praise Him, the stones would cry out (Luke 19:40 paraphrased). He deserves the highest praise and glory. Yet, Christ endured onwards towards the cross, the place of ultimate debasement and scorn, the place of the Father’s wrath for the putrid sins of humankind.
Jesus cried, “How often would I have gathered your children together as hens gathers her brood under her wings” (Matthew 23:37). How often did Jesus preach His truth to the Jews? How often did Jesus - in love - rebuke them unto the path of righteousness? How often has the Lord spoken truth to you and me? And How often have we rejected Him?
With tender care and affection, does he look at us? For you and I, he endured the cross. That is the proof of His love. As John 15:13 says, “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends”. This is what Christ has done for you and me. Will we believe and embrace His love? Romans 10:9 says, “if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”