Posts Tagged ‘Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem’

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Zechariah 9:9

Seeing the Summit as Plateau

Rejoice heartily, O daughter Zion, shout for joy, O daughter Jerusalem!  See, your king shall come to you; a just savior is he, meek, and riding on an ass, on a colt, the foal of an ass.

James Tissot: David Brings the Ark to Jerusalem

We reflect today on King David’s Jerusalem, examining our own lives for those times when all seemed right, when we felt our most competent, when challenges were met and breaches mended.  We look at a welcoming plateau in our lives when we reached what we thought was an ultimate summit.  We leaf through memories of warm relationships when decisions were reached easily and when we found a common bond with others who were anxious to fend off the common enemy.

In 2 Samuel 6 David enters Jerusalem bearing the Ark David, girt with a linen apron, came dancing before the Lord with abandon, as he all the Israelites were bringing up the ark of the Lord with shouts of joy and to the sound of the horn.  David’s success brings both elation and jealousy from others.  David’s entry into Jerusalem marks both beginning and an end

Today we recall Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem as a hero. People swarm after him hoping to catch a glimpse, perhaps hoping for a cure of some disease or heartbreak.  His followers, jostled by the crowd, either rejoice with pride or grumble with aggravation.  But as Jesus descends from the Mount of Olives, he, his disciples and the crowd all move forward inexorably into the city. They roll along powered by their enthusiasm and joy.  They have no idea that within the week some of them will have betrayed him.  Some of them will have jeered at him.  Some of them will have denied or condemned him.

Picture2When we exert great effort and take great risks to do as God asks, we celebrate as we reach what we perceive to be a pinnacle; but we must learn to collapse into the refuge of the plateau that God offers us rather than consider that we have reached the end of our journey.  Today we look at Jerusalem when David enters bearing the presence of the Lord and in that moment we see both happiness and envy – we know the stories of the events that follow.  Today we look at Jerusalem as Jesus enters in victory as the presence of God among us and in that moment we see deep happiness tinged with sorrow – for again we know the stories of the events that follow. Today if we look closely at our own entry into Jerusalem as a follower of Christ we see that we bear both our gifts and our pain to the Lord.  We have struggled to reach an impossible victory yet we know that there are untold stories yet to tell.

Pietro Lorenzetti: Jesus Enters Jerusalem and the Crowds Welcome Him

We know that this mountaintop is not an end experience but a high point in our journey home.  We need not see this gain as a loss for we are Easter people who live in Christ who tells us that the wonder and miracle of the Easter story that is about to unfold is true.  We know that each time we discover that a new conquest has been followed by a new defeat . . . we also discover that God is with us to carry us home.

When we find that our mountain victory is simply a plateau on which to rest we must rejoice . . . for we know that God is with us.

Spend some time today with King David’s Jerusalem as you make connections to your own Jerusalem experience.

Tissot image from: http://www.jesuswalk.com/david/08_david_ark.htm 

Lorenzetti image from: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triumphal_entry_into_Jerusalem 

King David’s Jerusalem: https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/myth-and-reality-of-king-david-s-jerusalem

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Monday, December 26, 2011 – Mark 11:1-11 – Jesus’ Entry into the World

Murillo: Nativity Shepherds

The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; upon those who dwelt in the land of gloom a light has shone.  You have brought them abundant joy and great rejoicing . . . (Isaiah 9:1-2) The prophet Isaiah anticipates the joy that will come into the world with the birth of the Messiah.  We anticipated the coming of this holiday, expending energy on little details and big decisions.  Suddenly, the event is over . . . or is it?

In a too-quick, on-to-the-next-thing world Christmas has ended.  Evergreen trees that a few hours ago decorated family rooms with a display of tended ornaments and artificial lights now lie bare at the curbside for recycling.  Presents opened and exchanged are nestled into their new places in the hubbub of our lives.  Objects stowed, family and friends greeted, back to work until the next holiday.  We have waited and shopped and prepared in anticipation for weeks . . . and now we may be tempted to rush on . . . and so miss the gift and promise of Christmas.

Today’s Noontime takes us to another part of the Christmas story; although we might not see it at first.  We find ourselves at the gates of Jerusalem about to enter with the Master.  He sends some of his followers into town in search of a colt he knows is tethered in a particular place.  Strangely, the animal is lent; the disciples answered just as Jesus told them to do when bystanders questioned them.  The colt is brought, people spread their cloaks on the road and raise leafy fronds as they sing: Hosanna!  Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!  The gift has been given and now the promise is to be fulfilled.  The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light . . .

How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings glad tidings, announcing peace, bearing good news, announcing salvation, and saying to Zion, “Your God is King!”  (Isaiah 52:7) The prophet Isaiah announces with joy the entry of the Messiah.  We looked for the coming of the Christmas holiday, offering prayers for big and little petitions.  Suddenly, the event is over . . . or is it?

In a too-fast, we-are-so-connected world Christmas is over.  Cranky relatives have been visited or called; old emotions and arguments boil to the surface to be put back into place.  All as it should be until the next occasion.  We have thought and reflected in anticipation for some time . . . and now we are eager to push on . . . and if we push on too quickly we miss the true gift and the eternal promise of Jesus’ entry into our lives.

And so we pray . . .

Good and gentle God, you come into our lives as both a vulnerable child and a determined savior.  Help us to linger in this message.  Encourage us to slow down so that we can take your message in.  Abide with us as we sink into the mystery you bring to us of your eternal and always constant love.  We rest in you this day and this night . . . as we ponder the gift of your entry.  Amen. 

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