March 05, 2008

On a Donkey

John 12:14-19

Jesus found a young donkey and sat upon it …
John 12:14


Jesus carefully chose the mount that carried him to his God-ordained destiny. After all, his means of travel was prophesied in the Old Testament: “Rejoice greatly, O Daughter of Zion! Shout, Daughter of Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey” (Zechariah 9:9).

Why a donkey? Well, in those days warriors rode on horses, and donkeys were used by people who were traveling in peace.

The purpose of Jesus’ coming was to fulfill the promise the angels announced at his birth: “On earth peace to [all] on whom his favor rests” (Luke 2:14). An old hymn says it well:

For not with swords’ loud clashing

or roll of stirring drums—

with deeds of love and mercy

the heavenly kingdom comes.

The greatest deed of love and mercy is the sacrifice Jesus made by dying on the cross for us, making peace between God and humankind.

Our Scripture reading says, “Do not be afraid, O Daughter of Zion …” These are words we need to hear as we struggle with fears in our lives. Jesus comes to bring peace in our hearts and assurance of God’s care.

We know, Lord Jesus, that when you come again, you will rout and destroy all that is wrong in this world, establishing your kingdom of peace forever. In your name, Amen.

About the author — Jerry Hoytema

Pastor Jerry Hoytema is a retired minister living in Ontario. In his retirement he has served several churches as an interim pastor. He and his wife, Winnie, have four children and 13 grandchildren.

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